This competing continuation application requests support for 6 postdoctoral fellows for primary training in aspects of alcohol research related to 4 major tracks: (i) genetic epidemiology;(ii) gene discovery, (iii) developmental psychopathology and longitudinal studies, and (iv) cognitive neuroscience (principally involving electrophysiology studies). In addition to specialization in a primary discipline, trainees will be encouraged to obtain a sufficient familiarity with other focus areas to facilitate fruitful cross-disciplinary collaborations in their research careers. The training program will ordinarily be of 3 years duration, reflecting the diverse backgrounds of our applicant pool (e.g. clinical psychology, social work, psychiatry, mathematics, other behavioral science). The training program emphasizes a research apprenticeship model, combining research under the mentorship of one or more experienced research mentors with more formal training through didactic courses and seminar programs;
and aims to help trainees make progress on their pathway to independence through high-impact first author publications, refinement of research ideas that will support a first grant submission as PI, and assistance in collection of feasibility data to support a first submission. Six of 10 who have completed fellowships have successful NIH applications as PI;2 have applications in process;and 2 trained in an area (basic neuroscience) dropped in this competing application. Major strengths of the program are its affiliation with a flourishing Alcoholism Research Center, the availability of senior faculty with an extensive program of alcoholism research, representing expertise in many aspects of statistical, molecular and genetic epidemiologic research on alcoholism;the highly productive research environment;the availability of major genetic data-bases offering many opportunities for innovative analyses and high-impact publications;access to ongoing projects that offer many opportunities for trainees to obtain expertise in clinical research;the program's location in one of the nation's leading medical schools, allowing trainees to take advantage of a rich array of didactic courses and seminars and research experiences;and the long tradition of successful mentoring and research training of scientists and clinician scientists from diverse intellectual backgrounds.

Public Health Relevance

Parent-to-child transmission of alcoholism often is characterized by genetic inheritance occurring in the context of high-risk environmental exposures associated with parental alcoholism. Trainees will learn to study this process through genetic including gene discovery-, longitudinal, and cognitive neuroscience approaches.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAA1)
Program Officer
Parsian, Abbas
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Washington University
Schools of Medicine
Saint Louis
United States
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Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A; Grant, Julia D; Agrawal, Arpana et al. (2015) Are there common familial influences for major depressive disorder and an overeating-binge eating dimension in both European American and African American female twins? Int J Eat Disord 48:375-82
van den Berg, St├ęphanie M; de Moor, Marleen H M; McGue, Matt et al. (2014) Harmonization of Neuroticism and Extraversion phenotypes across inventories and cohorts in the Genetics of Personality Consortium: an application of Item Response Theory. Behav Genet 44:295-313
Power, R A; Verweij, K J H; Zuhair, M et al. (2014) Genetic predisposition to schizophrenia associated with increased use of cannabis. Mol Psychiatry 19:1201-4
Koren, Rachel; Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A; Duncan, Alexis E et al. (2014) Is the relationship between binge eating episodes and personality attributable to genetic factors? Twin Res Hum Genet 17:65-71
Maciejewski, Dominique F; Creemers, Hanneke E; Lynskey, Michael T et al. (2014) Overlapping genetic and environmental influences on nonsuicidal self-injury and suicidal ideation: different outcomes, same etiology? JAMA Psychiatry 71:699-705
Duncan, Alexis E; Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A; Hudson, Darrell L et al. (2014) Genetic and environmental risk for major depression in African-American and European-American women. Twin Res Hum Genet 17:244-53
Koren, Rachel; Duncan, Alexis E; Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A et al. (2014) Preliminary evidence for the role of HTR2A variants in binge eating in young women. Psychiatr Genet 24:28-33
Rogers, C E; Kidokoro, H; Wallendorf, M et al. (2013) Identifying mothers of very preterm infants at-risk for postpartum depression and anxiety before discharge. J Perinatol 33:171-6
Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A; von Ranson, Kristin M; Culbert, Kristen M et al. (2013) An examination of the representativeness assumption for twin studies of eating pathology and internalizing symptoms. Behav Genet 43:427-35
Munn-Chernoff, Melissa A; Duncan, Alexis E; Grant, Julia D et al. (2013) A twin study of alcohol dependence, binge eating, and compensatory behaviors. J Stud Alcohol Drugs 74:664-73

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