Acting Clinical Director: Lorenzo Leggio, M.D., Ph.D.
Office of the Clinical Director
Biomedical Research Center
251 Bayview Blvd.,
Suite 200, Room 02A638
Baltimore, MD 21224
NIDA Office of the Clinical Director Phone: 443-740-2360
NIDA Nurses Station Phone: 443-740-2294
NIDA Patient Representative Phone: 443-740-2393
The Office of the Clinical Director (OCD) coordinates, supports, and supervises the development, implementation and conduct of intramural clinical research activities. The OCD provides the infrastructure needed to promote top quality clinical research and to ensure research participant safety and confidentiality. This infrastructure includes a research participant recruitment and screening center, a 45-slot addiction treatment outpatient research clinic and multiple specialized study rooms (including smoking chambers, mock MRI scanner, and physiological monitoring). In addition, a digital medical record system on a secure network has been developed and allows for all research related data to be accessible from within the IRP.
The clinical research portfolio at the NIDA IRP includes a wide variety of collaborative investigation that focus on:
- Safety and efficacy of new treatments for addiction.
- Factors that impact drug taking and relapse.
- Application of MRI-based structural and functional imaging to elucidate acute and chronic drug effects and their consequences on cognitive processes.
- Specific individual genetic polymorphisms and the group variance imaging endophenotypes to understand trait related predisposition and treatment outcome.
- Molecular genetic bases of individual differences in vulnerability to develop dependence on an addictive substance.
- Recruitment and characterization of subjects for genome wide association studies.
- Development of advanced functional and structural magnetic resonance imaging/spectroscopy techniques.
- Structural MRI techniques to assess tissue integrity related to brain dysfunction.
- Transcranial magnetic Stimulation (TMS) in the elucidation and treatment of addictive disorders.
- Mobile health applications for real-time in-the-field addiction treatment interventions.
The independent clinical investigators include:
- Brenda Curtis, Ph.D., MsPH (Unit Chief, Technology and Translational Research Unit)
- David Epstein, Ph.D. (Unit Chief, Real-world Assessment, Prediction, and Treatment Unit)
- Amy Janes, Ph.D. (Unit Chief, Cognitive and Pharmacological Neuroimaging Unit)
- Thorsten Kahnt, Ph.D. (Unit Chief, Learning and Decision-Making Unit)
- Lorenzo Leggio, M.D., Ph.D. (Branch Chief, Translational Addiction Medicine Branch)
- Yihong Yang, Ph.D. (Acting Branch Chief, Neuroimaging Research Branch
NIDA IRP OCD Gallery
Research Participant Recruitment and Screening
An integral component of Clinical Research for the NIDA IRP is participant recruiting and screening. Core services include advertising and media outreach to clinical research populations including healthy control participants, individuals with nicotine addiction, and individuals with opioid and other addictions, including those seeking and not seeking therapeutic intervention.
Administrative Management of the Clinical Research Program
The OCD is involved in:
- The scientific, resource, and patient safety monitoring of all clinical research protocols,
- Overseeing protocol implementation and execution by assuring availability of support personnel, space, equipment, and supplies; assessing data safety and monitoring plans and quality assurance reviews of clinical records.
- Overseeing and training of clinical personnel and developing clinical policies and standard operating procedures in collaboration with the clinical investigators, the medically accountable investigators, and the clinical support staff
- Hosting the NIDA IRP Addiction Grand Rounds.
Clinical Electives Program: Addiction Medicine
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) offers qualified students a 4-8 week clinical research elective in Addiction Medicine/Psychiatry at its Baltimore, Maryland site. Click here to visit the Clinical Electives Program page and learn more.