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Number 28, December 2009

This E-News is issued every other month to inform the international drug abuse research community about:

What's New

NIDA Director Honored by French Government for Addiction Research

NIDA Director Dr. Nora D. Volkow has been awarded the International Prize from the French Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) for her pioneering work in brain imaging and addiction science. Dr. Volkow received the award at a December 17 ceremony at the College of France learning center in Paris.

Inserm, a government-supported biomedical research organization, is the French equivalent of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Each year, it honors researchers for their contributions to basic and clinical research that enhance public health. Dr. Volkow's selection acknowledges her innovative imaging research showing drug addiction to be a disease of the brain that usurps the reward circuitry and leads to compulsive behaviors.

"I'm deeply honored to receive the Inserm award and gratified that the innovative tools available to addiction scientists are allowing us to literally see the effects of drug abuse and addiction on the brain," said Dr. Volkow. "What we uncover will inform more targeted and thus more effective strategies to help prevent and treat this devastating disease."

A research psychiatrist and scientist, Dr. Volkow is considered one of the world's leading specialists in the mechanisms underlying drug abuse and addiction. As NIDA’s director since 2003, she leads an organization supporting most of the world’s research on drug abuse and its associated health consequences.

Along with Dr. Volkow, there were six other 2009 Inserm award winners, all of France.

NIDA, Dutch Addiction Program Mark 10th Anniversary of Binational Collaboration

A meeting of the U.S.Netherlands Workshop on Binational Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Deputy Director Dr. A. Thomas McLellan, second from right, meets with ONDCP staff and participants in the U.S.–Netherlands Workshop on Binational Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction.

Celebrating a decade of progress through a uniquely successful binational agreement, officials from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the Dutch Addiction Programme (DAP) heard from jointly funded research teams at the U.S.–Netherlands Workshop on Binational Research Collaboration on Drug Abuse and Addiction, which was held October 22 and 23, 2009, in Washington, DC. Workshop participants met with White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Deputy Director Dr. A. Thomas McLellan, who described the Obama Administration’s priorities for drug control strategies, suggested ways that research can inform policy development, and congratulated NIDA and DAP for their “long and fruitful collaboration.”

NIDA and DAP representatives reviewed the factors contributing to what NIDA Deputy Director Dr. Timothy P. Condon called the Institute’s “most successful international collaboration” and identified priority areas for future collaboration. NIDA International Program Director Dr. Steven W. Gust and DAP Chair Dr. Sineke ten Horn chaired the workshop. Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport Senior Policy Officer Wil M. de Zwart stressed the unique and successful collaboration and discussed the drug policy review currently underway in The Netherlands.

Full Executive Summary (130KB)

NIDA Notes Features U.S.–Netherlands Research

In research funded through the U.S.–Netherlands Binational Agreement, Dr. John Lochman, University of Alabama, and Dr. Walter Matthys, Rudolf Magnus Institute of Neuroscience, have demonstrated that the NIDA-supported Coping Power Program is effective in Utrecht, The Netherlands, as well as in the United States. The intervention teaches social coping skills to at-risk children age 8 to 13, helping them avoid cigarette and marijuana use in adolescence. The project is being tested now in Puerto Rico, Spain, Ireland, and Italy. [NIDA Notes. Intervention for Disruptive Children Shows Long-Term Benefits. 2009;22(4):4–6]


Register Now: 2010 NIDA International Forum
June 11—15, 2010
The Fairmont Scottsdale
Scottsdale, Arizona
Abstract Submission and Travel Award Application Deadline: February 8, 2010

International Addiction Conference: Women, Children, and Gender

Satellite to CPDD
Friday, June 11, 2010
12 noon to 5:00 p.m.

In conjunction with the NIDA International Forum and the 72nd Annual Scientific Meeting of the College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD), this conference will bring together expert researchers and clinical providers passionate and committed to improving the lives of women and children to discuss the important and emerging evidence topics of:

  • Women-centered treatment
  • Sex and drug trafficking
  • Pregnancy and postpartum violence
  • Health disparities and HIV; and
  • Co-occurring disorders.

For more information, contact Wendee Wechsberg, RTI International, wmw@rti.org.

NIDA Supports 13 International Scientists at NHSN Conference

The National Hispanic Science Network (NHSN) International Conference, which was held October 29–31 in Miami, Florida, focused on interdisciplinary research on the epidemiology and prevention of cigarette, alcohol, and drug use/abuse in adolescence; interventions for the treatment of tobacco and substance abuse disorders; genetic and environmental factors that influence addiction; and mentoring and training activities to promote career development from graduate students to senior scientists. NIDA supported 13 scientists from Chile, Mexico, and Spain, who presented their research at the International Poster Session, including:

  • Chile: Luis Caris, Universidad de Chile, and Carmen Gloria Hidalgo, Universidad Católica de Chile.
  • Mexico: Octavio Campollo, University of Guadalajara; Marycarmen Bustos Gamino, Ma. De Lourdez Gutierrez, Michelle Breton Cirett, Midiam Moreno, and Jorge Ameth Villatoro, Instituto Nacional de Psiquiatria Ramon de la Fuente Muñiz.
  • Spain: Anna Robert, Benito Menni CASM; Francisco Jose Montero-Bancalero, Fundation Forja XXI; Francisco Javier Romero, Universidad CEU Cardenal Herrera; Claudia Cristina Morales-Manrique, Universidad de Valencia; and Francisco Bueno, Plan Municipal Drogodependencias.

Online Researcher Training Web Site Now Offers Low-Cost Textbook

The Web site www.DrugAbuseResearchTraining.org provides free, online training to international drug abuse researchers. The site recently added a low-cost textbook, Introduction to Clinical Drug and Substance Abuse Research Methods, to help international students and teachers improve research skills. The 334-page textbook focuses on drug abuse research and provides a comprehensive introduction to proposal design, clinical trials, biostatistics, and other areas essential to clinical drug abuse research. It also contains self-assessment questions and numerous examples from the drug abuse literature. The new textbook can be ordered from www.DrugAbuseResearchTraining.org for $26.11 US.

In Memoriam: James A. Inciardi

James A. Inciardi, co-director of the University of Delaware Center for Drug and Alcohol Studies (Miami office), died November 23, 2009, from multiple myeloma. Dr. Inciardi also held appointments at the University of Miami School of Medicine and the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Porto Alegre, Brazil. His research had been supported by NIDA since 1976, and he consulted extensively both nationally and internationally. A researcher, clinician, field worker, and teacher in the areas of AIDS, substance abuse, and criminal justice, he had published 500 articles, chapters, books, and monographs. His work on HIV interventions with high-risk populations led to programs that have been instituted in the United States, Brazil, and the Virgin Islands. At his death, he was working on a new ethnography on ecstasy use in Brazil. The University of Delaware will hold a memorial service in February, 2010.

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Funding Opportunities

International Research Collaboration on Drug Addiction

Existing NIDA-Supported Funding Opportunities

National Institutes of Health (NIH) Funding Opportunities and Notices

Upcoming Program Announcement Receipt Dates From Fogarty International Center

Fogarty International Center

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Research Training and Exchange Updates

Upcoming Application Deadlines

NIDA and International AIDS Society Expand Fellowships in HIV and Drug Use Research

Deadline: February 10, 2010

NIDA and the International AIDS Society (IAS) have expanded their fellowship program that focuses on HIV research related to drug abuse. In 2010, four IAS/NIDA Research Fellowships in HIV and Drug Use will be awarded, doubling the number of awards made in 2009. The goal of the fellowship program is to contribute to advances in the scientific understanding of drug abuse and HIV, while fostering multinational research on the topic. Two awards of $75,000 each will be made to junior HIV and drug abuse scientists for 18-month postdoctoral training at a leading research institute in the field; two more awards of $75,000 each will be made to well-established HIV scientists, not currently active in the drug abuse field, for 8-month professional development training on HIV and drug abuse. While applications from across the globe are welcome, scientists from Eastern Europe and Central Asia are strongly encouraged to apply. The fellowships will be announced in conjunction with the XVIII International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2010) in Vienna, Austria, July 18–23, 2010.

NIDA Selects Three New INVEST Fellows

NIDA has selected scientists from China, Russia, and Sweden as 2010 INVEST Fellows:

  • Huaihui Zhang, M.D., Ph.D., a psychiatrist at the Shanghai Yangpu District Mental Health Center, initiated psychosocial research in local methadone maintenance treatment clinics and is especially interested in amphetamine- type stimulant abuse among this population. She has served as co-principal investigator with Yih-ing Hser, Ph.D., University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), on a NIDA R21 grant, Improving Methadone Maintenance Treatment Compliance and Outcomes in China. Dr. Zhang has attended training programs at UCLA, University of Miami, the German-Chinese Academy for Psychotherapy, and Hong Kong University. Working with her INVEST mentor, Richard S. Schottenfeld, M.D., Yale University, she will evaluate the prevalence, clinical correlates, and impact on treatment response of co-occurring abuse of other illicit substances among heroin-dependent patients receiving opioid agonist maintenance treatment to inform practice guidelines and policies.
  • Mikhail Torban, M.D., is a research fellow at St. Petersburg Psychoneurological Scientific Institute, Russia, where he investigates injection drug use, HIV and hepatitis risk behaviors, and drug treatment. Dr. Torban is a former trainee in the International Clinical, Operational and Health Services Research Training Award for AIDS and TB program directed by his INVEST mentor, Robert Heimer, Ph.D., Yale University. Drs. Torban and Heimer have worked together since 2005, publishing two peer-reviewed articles, preparing grant applications, and conducting a research project to study the attitudes and knowledge of Russian substance abuse treatment professionals. Dr. Torban also attended Johns Hopkins University Graduate Summer Institute of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, and wants to improve his skills in qualitative data collection and analysis. During his INVEST Fellowship, he will use rapid assessment and response protocols to explore the differences among Connecticut migrant communities to develop culturally appropriate substance abuse and HIV interventions for Bosnian, Russian, and Salvadorian injection drug users and to identify the individual, community, and structural facilitators of and barriers to care.
  • Henriettae M. Stahlbrandt, M.D., Ph.D., Linköping University, Sweden, will work with Christine M. Lee, Ph.D., University of Washington. Dr. Stahlbrandt is a radiologist interested in neuroimaging for substance abuse research and an expert consultant in child and adolescent alcohol interventions with the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare. She has collaborated on alcohol research with Dr. Lee and her colleagues at the University of Washington, and planned the fellowship to expand her research into marijuana as well as to learn best practices in subject recruitment and retention; assessment, prevention, and treatment of substance use disorders; statistics for longitudinal survey research; and analysis of complex neuroimaging data. During her INVEST Fellowship, Dr. Stahlbrandt will compare two cue exposure paradigms for eliciting craving, using both self-report and fMRI measures of craving, in two samples of college students with marijuana or alcohol use disorders.

INVEST-CTN Fellows Present at Clinical Trials Network (CTN) Meeting

In October presentations to the NIDA Clinical Trials Network Steering Committee, fellows Hanhui Chen, M.D., China, and Mario Zapata, M.D., M.Sc., Colombia, reviewed the drug abuse situation in their respective countries, summarized their research during the INVEST-CTN Fellowship year, and discussed their future plans. The NIDA International Program and Center for the Clinical Trials Network support the 12-month postdoctoral training program for scientists who work with a mentor affiliated with 1 of the 16 CTN Regional Research and Training Centers.

  • Dr. Chen estimated that China has 5 million to 10 million drug users, with opiates accounting for 70 percent of problem drug use and amphetamine-type stimulants accounting for 30 percent of drug use. He reported that methadone maintenance treatment has expanded rapidly since its introduction, but is underutilized and that professional training and clinical research into drug treatment and prevention need to be expanded. His fellowship focused on best practices in clinical research and treatment, data analysis, and scientific writing.
  • Dr. Zapata focused on developing and implementing clinical trial protocols, learned to deliver Brief Strategic Family Therapy, and designed a pilot project to test treatment effectiveness in Colombia. Citing the dramatic increase in coca cultivation since 2005, Dr. Zapata noted that the United Nations attributes more than 50 percent of South American cocaine production to Colombia. He reported that the primary drugs of abuse among adolescents are marijuana, nitrate “poppers,” cocaine, and inhalants.

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Society for Prevention Research (SPR)

June 1–4, 2010
Denver, Colorado, USA

SPR International Networking Forum

Tuesday, June 1, 2010
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Denver, Colorado, USA
For more information, contact Jennifer Lewis, SPR, jenniferlewis@preventionresearch.org.

Calendar of Scientific Meetings

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Press Releases

NIH News & Events

NIDA Newsroom

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Other Items of Interest

NIDA Clinical Trials Network Dissemination Library

NIDA Clinical Trials Network Data Share

NIDA Methadone Research Web Guide

NIDA International Virtual Collaboratory

National Library of Medicine (NLM)

NIH Library Research Tools

The Research Assistant

Publishing Addiction Research Internationally: www.PARINT.org

International Programme in Addiction Studies

International Drug, Alcohol and Tobacco Research Community

Drug Abuse Research Training Modules

NOTE: The following information is being provided for informational purposes only. Reference to any Web site listed below does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by NIDA/NIH/HHS.


The International Society of Addiction Medicine offers an International Certification in Addiction Medicine for physicians.

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This page was last updated November 2009