The purpose of this application is to continue the University of Vermont's highly successful 25-year T32 training program in the human behavioral pharmacology of drug dependence. During the past ten years, we trained 14 predoctoral and 16 postdoctoral fellows. Among those 30 fellows, all but one remains involved in research careers. Fourteen have completed the training phase of their careers. Among those 14, 7 (50%) have primary university faculty positions, 5 (33%) are principal investigators (PI) on one or more NIH research awards, and they have published more than 250 journal articles and book chapters on addiction. Collectively, the 30 fellows have published more than 350 journal articles and book chapters on addiction. In addition to being a productive training program, the training our fellows receive in human behavioral pharmacology fills a unique niche in addiction research. Our fellows learn to identify basic behavioral and pharmacological processes underpinning addiction and to translate that knowledge into effective clinical interventions and policy. We propose to continue our emphasis on human behavioral pharmacology in the next funding period, with an expansion into tobacco regulatory science and the impact of addictive behavior on health outcomes. Since last renewal, we received a P50 Tobacco Centers of Regulatory Science award and a P20 Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) award in behavior and health, which has brought added value to our training program via access to new seminars, interactions with new fellows, and new research and career opportunities. We are proposing to continue supporting 4-predoctoral and 4-postdoctoral training slots with this T32 award. The seven members of the proposed training faculty consist of five Ph.D.s, one M.D., and one M.D. /Ph.D. This faculty is PIs on two NIH center grants, 8 R01s, 3 R01-equivalent program projects, an R34, an R21, and two R21-equivalent program projects, creating a rich range of research training opportunities in addiction research. All of our faculty and fellows are located at a singl, on-campus site composed of 8000 sq ft of newly renovated laboratory, clinic, and office space. Fellows are selected based on scholastic excellence and commitment to a career in addiction research. Predoctoral fellows are enrolled in the Department of Psychological Science PhD programs in experimental or clinical psychology where they complete required coursework including those developed for this training program, and complete master's and doctoral theses. Postdoctoral fellows primarily focus on conducting and supervising independent research, with additional opportunities to further their education via course-work. Each fellow has a primary mentor from the training faculty. Fellows attend weekly seminars in addiction research and ethics. Additionally, they present their research at two or more national scientific meetings annually. The training period is generally 4-5 years for predoctoral and 2-3 years for postdoctoral fellows. The overarching goal of the proposed training program is to continue developing productive, independent, state-of-the-art addiction researchers.

Public Health Relevance

The purpose of this application is to continue a highly successful 25-year training program in addiction research. Students will be trained to identify basic behavioral, genetic, neurobiological, and pharmacological processes involved in addiction and to translate that knowledge into effective clinical interventions and policy. Prior graduates o this program have done quite well at remaining involved in research, publishing articles on addiction, and becoming independent addiction researchers. We aim to continue this record of training success in the next funding period.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)
Institutional National Research Service Award (T32)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZDA1)
Program Officer
Lao, Guifang
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University of Vermont & St Agric College
Schools of Medicine
United States
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