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REPORT From the Basic Science Review Work Group National Institute on Drug Abuse May 2006. National Institute on Drug Abuse Division of Basic Neuroscience and Behavioral Research. NIDA Basic Science Review Work Group. First Meeting November 17-18, 2005

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REPORT From the Basic Science Review Work Group National Institute on Drug Abuse May 2006

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REPORT

From the

Basic Science

Review

Work Group

National Institute

on Drug Abuse

May 2006

National Institute on Drug Abuse

Division of Basic Neuroscience

and Behavioral Research


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NIDA Basic Science

Review Work Group

First Meeting November 17-18, 2005

Second Meeting March 8-9, 2006

NIDA Council Members

Other Members

Linda Porrino, Ph.D, Chair

Barry Lester, Ph.D.

John P. Rice, Ph.D.

Guy Cabral, Ph.D.

Frank Ivy Carroll, Ph.D

Kathryn Cunningham, Ph.D

Yasmin Hurd, Ph.D.

Michael Nader, Ph.D.

Marina Picciotto, Ph.D.

Stanley Watson, M.D., Ph.D.


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NIDA Basic Science Review Work Group

  • Review of the current Basic Science program portfolio

  • Recommendations to strengthen the current program

  • Input into the 5-year plan for NIDA’s Basic Science program with an emphasis on:

    • Genetic vulnerability and protection

    • Epigenetics (interactions of environment and genetics)

    • The genetics and neurobiology of social behavior

    • Molecular biology of addiction

  • Examination of the organization and management of DBNBR and its interactions with other NIDA Divisions/Centers

Charge: To produce a written report that includes…


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Review Findings

  • Cross-cutting findings and recommendations

  • Theme-specific findings and recommendations

    • Processes and mechanisms of addiction

    • Genetic vulnerability to drug abuse

    • Pain and analgesia

    • AIDS, HCV, virology

    • Development

    • Chemistry and medicinal chemistry

    • Social neuroscience


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Cross-cutting Findings:Accomplishments

  • Exceptionally strong and forward thinking portfolio

  • Recruitment of excellent scientists in and outside the field of substance abuse

  • Strong leadership and staff

  • Ability to identify new areas of importance to NIDA and recruit a critical mass to the area

  • Training of new investigators

  • Efforts to increase gender and minority diversity

  • Thematic approach that cuts across branches


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Cross-cutting Findings:Opportunities

  • Encouraging translation across NIDA Divisions

    • Formation of a Task Force on Translational Addiction Research

    • Assignment of grants to program staff of more than one Division

    • Formation of an Innovation Committee made of up of representatives from each Division to provide support for potential high payoff applications beyond the pay line

  • Focus on development of improved animal models with greater predictive value

  • Improve dissemination of information about NIDA services

  • Continue efforts to encourage grantees to utilize Roadmap and Blueprint funding mechanisms


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Theme-Specific Findings:Accomplishments

  • Establishment of the NIDA Genetics Consortium and the studies utilizing these resources

  • Expanding studies across the life span: Addition of studies in adolescence to the development portfolio

  • Development of programs in the area of lipidomics

  • Program for the distribution of drugs and other materials

  • Basic science studies of virology and immunology

  • Continued development of animal models that better mimic various aspects of the human drug experience


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Theme-Specific Findings:Opportunities

  • Addition of neurobiology of social behavior as a thematic area with an emphasis on genetics and epigenetic studies

  • Further emphasis on developmental studies through the establishment of a Developmental Research Program in the Office of the Director

  • Expanded emphasis on the Genetics Consortium

  • Continued emphasis on HIV/AIDS, particularly animal models and interactions beyond opioids

  • Continued emphasis on the development of safe and effective pain medications


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Conclusions/Summary

  • DBNBR has established strong research programs central to the mission of NIDA: to bring the power of science to bear on problems of drug abuse.

  • DBNBR plays a critical role in translation of basic science conducted in their division to studies of human patients conducted in other NIDA divisions

  • Opportunities to enhance basic science include:

    • Investment in emerging areas of social neuroscience and epigenetics

    • Strengthened dissemination of services

    • Continued fostering of the careers of new investigators

    • Continued emphasis on the “revolution” in the ways science will be conducted in the future


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