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NIDA in the News


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Press Releases

Regular Marijuana Use by Teens Continues to be a Concern
Dr. Nora Volkow presents MTF data

Dr. Nora Volkow presents MTF data

Chris Leibowitz shares his story of recovery

Chris Leibowitz shares his story of recovery

Continued high use of marijuana by the nation's eighth, 10th and 12th graders combined with a drop in perceptions of its potential harms was revealed in this year's Monitoring the Future survey, an annual survey of eighth, 10th, and 12th–graders conducted by researchers at the University of Michigan. Read press release ⇒

Results from the 2012 survey were unveiled December 19th at a press conference in Washington, D.C. NIDA Director Dr. Nora Volkow presented the survey results, joined by ONDCP Director Gil Kerlikowske, Assistant Secretary for Health at HHS Dr. Howard Koh, and Principal Investigator Dr. Lloyd Johnston. In addition, Chris Leibowitz, a young adult in recovery from drug addiction, shared his personal story at the event.

Dr. Nora Volkow and Gil Kerlikowske with high school students invited to the news conference.

Dr. Nora Volkow and Gil Kerlikowske with high school students invited to the news conference.

NIDA worked with several local organizations, including the Washington Regional Alcohol Program, Bridging Resources in Communities, Inc., Unified Prevention Coalition of Fairfax County, and Community of Concern to arrange for approximately 45 high school students to attend the press conference. The students met with Dr. Volkow and Mr. Kerlikowske after the presentation to ask questions.

MTF Infographic

A special infographic depicting highlights of the MTF results was created and posted on NIDA’s website and Facebook account to generate additional awareness of the findings. Media coverage of the survey was extensive, reaching more than 320 million people. There were 53 original stories and 397 total clips. Additionally, NIDA posted live tweets on its Twitter account during the MTF press conference. Overall, more than 700 tweets were posted on Twitter using #MTF2012 or mentioning “Monitoring the Future.” Listen to the audiocast of the press conference ⇒ | View additional information on the MTF survey ⇒

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New Bath Salts Resource Available from NIDA
Photo of Bath Salts
A new resource on “bath salts,” an emerging family of drugs containing one or more synthetic chemicals, is now available on NIDA’s website: drugabuse.gov. Reports of severe intoxication and dangerous health effects associated with use of bath salts have made these drugs a serious and growing public health and safety issue. Read more ⇒ | Solutions Recover, Inc. story

New Online Resources for Opioid Prescribers Now Available on NIDA’s Website
New training materials for health providers who prescribe or counsel patients about opioids for pain relief are now available on NIDA’s website. The two courses, entitled Safe Prescribing for Pain and Managing Patients Who Abuse Prescription Drugs, include video vignettes modeling doctor patient conversations on the safe and effective use of opioid pain medications. The materials are part of the NIDAMED initiative to help physicians, medical interns and residents, and other clinicians understand and address the complex problem of prescription drug abuse. Read more ⇒

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Other News

Dr. Rao Rapaka Named AAAS 2012 Fellow
Dr. Rapaka

Dr. Rao Rapaka

Dr. Rao Rapaka, Chief of DBNBR’s Chemistry and Physiological Systems Research Branch at NIDA, has been named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). This honor is awarded based on scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. Dr. Rapaka will be presented with an official certificate and a rosette pin on February 16 at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2013 AAAS Annual Meeting in Boston, Mass. View AAAS press release

Dr. Gaya Dowling Highlights Dangers of Marijuana at Local Event
L to R: Chris Leibowitz, Officer Jim Tuomey, Dr. Gaya Dowling, and Dr. William Hauda

L to R: Chris Leibowitz, Officer Jim Tuomey, Dr. Gaya Dowling, and Dr. William Hauda

OSPC Science Policy Branch Chief Dr. Gaya Dowling served as a panelist for a discussion on the effects of marijuana on the brain and the body at the Arlington Central Library in December. The event, entitled “What’s the Big Deal? Teen Marijuana Use in Arlington,” was sponsored by the Arlington READY (Reduce or Eliminate Alcohol and Drug Use in Youth) Coalition.

NIDA Participates in Initiative to Promote Substance Abuse Awareness and Prevention for Virginia's Youth
SADD students and Brian Marquis

L to R: Brian Marquis, NIDA intern Nyria Barrera and teen representatives of the Garfield High School SADD

On October 30, Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell launched a new prevention initiative designed to bring awareness to parents, educators, students and youth advocates about the dangers of substance abuse, especially the growing use of synthetic cannabinoids, hallucinogenic “bath salts,” and misused prescription medicine. Brian Marquis of NIDA’s Public Information and Liaison Branch attended the kickoff in Richmond, Va., with students from Garfield High School’s Students Against Destructive Decisions Club. NIDA teen materials were distributed at the event.

PATH Study Launches Field Test and Website

PATH Study Team Receiving NIH Director's Award

NIH-FDA’s Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) field study is underway. The PATH Study is a large, national longitudinal cohort study of tobacco use behavior and health in the United States. The initiative represents the first large-scale NIH-FDA collaboration since Congress authorized FDA to regulate tobacco products by passing the landmark Family Smoking Protection and Tobacco Control Act in 2009. In July 2012, the NIDA PATH Study Team Received an
NIH Director's Award, which recognizes superior performance directly related to fulfilling the NIH mission.

Applications for U.S.-Mexico Drug Abuse Prevention Research Fellowship Due April 1, 2013
NIDA International Program logo
NIDA’s U.S.-Mexico Drug Abuse Prevention Research Fellowship provides 12 months of postdoctoral training in the United States for a Mexican citizen or permanent resident. The fellowship provides an opportunity to conduct mentored prevention research, as well as participate in professional and research development activities and learn about the U.S. NIH grant application process. The NIDA International Program is seeking candidate applications for 2013. The application deadline is April 1, 2013. Read more ⇒| View article about previous Fellow ⇒

New Spanish Videos Available on NIDA’s Website
Video screenshot
NIDA recently produced three Spanish language videos featuring Dr. Volkow speaking to students in Mexico, which have been posted on the NIDA website. The videos cover Addiction & Adolescents; Dopamine & Pleasure Sensors; and Multiple Factors Affecting Addiction. The videos are part of an online “speakers kit” package created to equip Spanish-speaking community educators to give a talk about drugs and teens. View videos ⇒

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From the Field

CTN Grantee Receives AACAP Elaine Schlosser Lewis Award for Research
University of Colorado logo
Dr. Paula Riggs of the University of Colorado School of Medicine received the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) Elaine Schlosser Lewis Award for Research on Attention-Deficit Disorder for her paper on adolescents receiving treatment for both ADHD and substance abuse. The study was funded by NIDA’s CTN. View AACAP press release ⇒

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act Grant Generates Coverage in The New York Times
ARRA logo
A NIDA ARRA study examining how depression, anxiety, cigarettes and alcohol can affect bone density was recently published in the Journal of Adolescent Health and highlighted in the The New York Times. NIDA grantee Dr. Lorah Dorn of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital was quoted about her research findings. View the study ⇒ | Read The New York Times story ⇒

Grantee Completes First Drug Tests in Humans for Methamphetamine Addiction
University of Arkansas logo
Research by NIDA grantee Dr. Brooks Gentry (University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences) was recently highlighted in a University press release. The research described the completion of the first human safety tests for a medication to help battle methamphetamine addiction. View press release ⇒ | Read story in Science Daily

NIDA Grantee Publishes Research on Juvenile Offenders
University of Pittsburgh logo
A NIDA co-funded paper was recently published in the journal Child Development. The study by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh, Temple University, and the University of California, Irvine, found that placing juvenile offenders in jobs without ensuring that they attend school may make them more antisocial. View the Society for Research in Child Development press release ⇒ | View study ⇒

Neuropsychopharmaology Publishes UM-led Brain Research
University of Michigan logo
NIDA-funded research by University of Michigan grantee Dr. Jon-Kar Zubieta was published recently in Neuropsychopharmacology. The findings showed a significant link between certain personality traits and how much relief people said they felt when given a placebo for pain – as well as the level of a specific chemical that their brains released. View article ⇒ | Read press release ⇒

2013 CRIT/FIT Program in Addiction Medicine to Be Held in May
Boston University logo
The Chief Resident Immersion Training/Fellow Immersion Training (CRIT/FIT) program, funded by NIDA, is a four-day immersion training for incoming chief residents, their faculty mentors and subspecialty fellows on evidence-based methods in diagnosing, managing, teaching and researching about substance use disorders. The 2013 CRIT/FIT program will be held May 1-4, 2013 in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. There are no tuition or registration fees for NIDA-sponsored programs. Accommodations and travel for chief residents and fellows are fully funded (mentors’ accommodations are partially funded). Applications are accepted until February 11, 2013. Applications can be found at www.bumc.bu.edu/crit and www.bumc.bu.edu/fit. For more information, contact Britt Carney.

NIDA Grantees at Duke Publish Smoking Study
Duke School of Medicine logo
A NIDA-funded study by Duke University researchers was recently published in Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology. Drs. Merideth Addicott, Michael Platt, and Joseph McClernon of Duke University’s School of Medicine designed a study to investigate whether smokers differ from nonsmokers in their degree of exploratory behavior. View article ⇒

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