The candidate Sharon JL Levy, MD, MPH is an associate researcher at the Center for Adolescent Substance Abuse Research at Children's Hospital Boston, Medical Director of the Adolescent Substance Abuse Program at Children's Hospital, Boston, and an Instructor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School (HMS). She is an emerging expert on the use of urine drug testing with adolescents, and has published original scientific articles and clinical reviews on this topic. Dr. Levy has served as PI of two studies on adolescent drug testing. During the K23 award period, Dr. Levy will be relieved of clinical and administrative responsibilities so that she may develop new knowledge, skills, and experience in drug and alcohol behavioral treatment research. She will conduct a stage I trial of random urine drug testing as a therapeutic adjuvant for adolescents with problem use, abuse or dependence on drugs or alcohol. Her long-term career goal is to develop, test, and disseminate a complete set of medical practice guidelines for the primary care management of adolescent substance use. With support from the K23 award, she will also complete courses in research study design and biostatistical analysis at the Harvard School of Public Health, as well as further training in psychopharmacology, toxicology and behavioral therapies for adolescent substance abuse. Dr. John Knight, who will serve as Dr. Levy's primary mentor, has recently been awarded an R01 award to study the use of a brief intervention with adolescents who are using drugs and alcohol at Children's Hospital, Boston. Dr. Levy will serve as a Clinician-Therapist and the Adherence Coordinator for this project until the drug testing trial begins. This places her in an ideal position to conduct the proposed trial, and ensures frequent contact with Dr. Knight who will be available for frequent meetings as well as to advise her whenever the need arises. Children's Hospital Boston presents an ideal research and training environment. It is the largest pediatric medical center in the U.S. Children's recently established a Clinical Research Program, whose mission is to train and assist new clinical investigators. Dr. Levy's background in Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, her experience in teaching and training, and her established relationships with national organizations, will help ensure the widest possible dissemination of her research findings.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award (K23)
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Human Development Research Subcommittee (NIDA)
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Chambers, Jessica Campbell
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Children's Hospital Boston
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Winham, Stacey J; Jenkins, Gregory D; Biernacka, Joanna M (2016) Modeling X Chromosome Data Using Random Forests: Conquering Sex Bias. Genet Epidemiol 40:123-32
Levy, Sharon; Weiss, Roger; Sherritt, Lon et al. (2014) An electronic screen for triaging adolescent substance use by risk levels. JAMA Pediatr 168:822-8
Winham, Stacey J; Biernacka, Joanna M (2013) Gene-environment interactions in genome-wide association studies: current approaches and new directions. J Child Psychol Psychiatry 54:1120-34
Winham, Stacey J; Colby, Colin L; Freimuth, Robert R et al. (2012) SNP interaction detection with Random Forests in high-dimensional genetic data. BMC Bioinformatics 13:164
Levy, Sharon; Knight, John R; Moore, Thomas et al. (2011) Acceptability of drug testing in an outpatient substance abuse program for adolescents. J Adolesc Health 48:229-33
Levy, Sharon; Sherritt, Lon; Gabrielli, Joy et al. (2009) Screening adolescents for substance use-related high-risk sexual behaviors. J Adolesc Health 45:473-7