The candidate requests five years of support through this Mentored Research Scientist Development Award application in order to gain in-depth experience conducting epidemiological studies of substance use disorders and to facilitate his career transition from basic biomolecular research. Specifically, issues in substance abuse and its risk factors will be studied with particular emphasis on personality traits. The research consists of three separate but related projects: a.) Nine-year follow-up of a study of infant temperament and putatively associated neurotransmitter metabolites. Risk factors for substance abuse will be assessed and are hypothesized to be predictable from infancy data. This study will evaluate the predictive capacity of early life data. Additionally, the overlap between personality and other risk factors in mid-childhood will be evaluated, b.) Follow-up of a cohort of adults, 35-40 years after their participation in a classical study on childhood personality, that will evaluate the predictive validity of personality traits in childhood for substance abuse outcomes in adulthood. This prospective study will quantitate the importance of personality in predicting substance use outcomes over a very long time period. It will also serve as a feasibility study for a larger potential project that would have adequate statistical power for assessment of a broad spectrum of drug abuse behaviors and their differential association with childhood personality, c.) Analysis of data from the Collaborative Study on the Genetics of Alcoholism to determine the effect of parental substance abuse on offspring personality and evaluate the hypothesis that personality factors are key components of genetic/familial risk. These analyses will take advantage of existing data from a large study to better understand the role of familial substance abuse as a risk factor. In the short term, execution of original projects will provide the applicant with practical experience in epidemiological investigation focused on substance abuse; analysis of existing data will enable continued development of quantitative skills. Execution of research projects is planned to coincide with formal coursework and mentoring. In the long term, activities outlined in this application will provide the candidate with the necessary knowledge and experience on which to build a career as an independently funded substance abuse researcher and to integrate his biological and epidemiological training.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Research Scientist Development Award - Research & Training (K01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZDA1-KXA-N (02))
Program Officer
Etz, Kathleen
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
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Washington University
Schools of Medicine
Saint Louis
United States
Zip Code
Martins, Silvia S; Keyes, Katherine M; Storr, Carla L et al. (2010) Birth-cohort trends in lifetime and past-year prescription opioid-use disorder resulting from nonmedical use: results from two national surveys. J Stud Alcohol Drugs 71:480-7
Grucza, Richard A; Norberg, Karen E; Bierut, Laura J (2009) Binge drinking among youths and young adults in the United States: 1979-2006. J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry 48:692-702
Norberg, Karen E; Bierut, Laura J; Grucza, Richard A (2009) Long-term effects of minimum drinking age laws on past-year alcohol and drug use disorders. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 33:2180-90
Saccone, Nancy L; Saccone, Scott F; Goate, Alison M et al. (2008) In search of causal variants: refining disease association signals using cross-population contrasts. BMC Genet 9:58
Grucza, Richard A; Przybeck, Thomas R; Cloninger, C Robert (2008) Screening for alcohol problems: an epidemiological perspective and implications for primary care. Mo Med 105:67-71
Bierut, Laura Jean; Stitzel, Jerry A; Wang, Jen C et al. (2008) Variants in nicotinic receptors and risk for nicotine dependence. Am J Psychiatry 165:1163-71
Grucza, Richard A; Norberg, Karen; Bucholz, Kathleen K et al. (2008) Correspondence between secular changes in alcohol dependence and age of drinking onset among women in the United States. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 32:1493-501
Grucza, Richard A; Bucholz, Kathleen K; Rice, John P et al. (2008) Secular trends in the lifetime prevalence of alcohol dependence in the United States: a re-evaluation. Alcohol Clin Exp Res 32:763-70
Grucza, Richard A; Wang, Jen C; Stitzel, Jerry A et al. (2008) A risk allele for nicotine dependence in CHRNA5 is a protective allele for cocaine dependence. Biol Psychiatry 64:922-9
Grucza, Richard A; Goldberg, Lewis R (2007) The comparative validity of 11 modern personality inventories: predictions of behavioral acts, informant reports, and clinical indicators. J Pers Assess 89:167-87

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