What’s Inside?? 

As the pandemic continued, our committees were charged with identifying and implementing programing opportunities that would support our pre-pandemic momentum. Toward that end, our Seminar Series Chairs, Drs. Meredith Berry & Marek Schwendt, re-worked the monthly events creating small discussion group and social hours with our external speakers.  Our Social Committee, chaired by Drs. Jeff Boissoneault & Rob Leeman,  shifted gears from planning an outdoor kickball competition to creating a career development event allowing faculty and trainees to discuss career issues ranging from getting grants, to writing manuscripts, taking/giving criticism and work/life balance.  AND our executive committee is re-“purposing” funds previously budgeted to support trainee travel, focusing instead on competitive awards covering  registration fees for on-line scientific meetings and providing awards to help trainees recover research losses created by the COVID-19 shut-down.  Also, we note  that Dr. Leeman’s term on the Executive Committee has expired.  He has been an enormous asset! Fortunately, he will continue to be active in CARE.  We are also fortunate and delighted that  Dr. Cathy Striley from the Department of Epidemiology has agreed to serve in this position. See more on her inside.  In short, there’s been no shut-down, just some re-directing!  Finally, I must note that NONE of these adjustments in programming or operations could be underway without the talents and commitment of our administrative staff, Robert Prather—WOW! 

Have look inside, don’t hesitate to contact us at care@health.ufl.edu) and Stay Safe. -SJN


CARE Podcast Affiliate Episode 2 Carly Logan

UF CARE Podcast: Affiliate Episode 2, Carly Logan, Department of Psychology

Affiliate host Victor Schneider is joined by Carly Logan. At time of recording Dr. Logan was a graduate student in the Department of Psychology with Dr. Lori Knackstedt and recipient of a UF CARE Dissertation Award. LISTEN NOW »


Upcoming September Seminar:

CARE Seminar Lopez-Quintero 09162020

Seminar: 3 PM September 16, Dr. Catalina Lopez-Quintero, UF Department of Epidemiology

UF CARE Seminar: Dr. Catalina Lopez-Quintero, UF Department of Epidemiology 3:00 PM, Sep 16, 2020 Join Zoom Meeting: https://ufl.zoom.us/j/93307592045 Meeting ID: 933 0759 2045 READ MORE »


Preclinical Addiction Journal Club

Contact Dr. Brandon Warren to be added to the list to receive the paper and updates directly: brandon.warren@cop.ufl.edu

1st Wednesday of each month from 3:00 - 4:00 PM via Zoom:

Next Meeting: UF CARE Affiliate Member Lisa Wilson will be presenting a paper

Join Zoom Meeting


Previously Recorded Recent Seminar:

Karen Szumlinski

SHARC Research Seminar:

Dr. Lynn Fiellin, MD, Yale School of Medicine

11:00 AM, September 10, 2020

Building a Program and Effective Platform for Health and Learning Games Research: A Decade in the Making

Dr. Fiellin founded the play2PREVENT Lab at Yale and subsequently founded and now directs the Lab and the Yale Center for Health & Learning Games. Her Lab/Center focuses on the development and evaluation of videogame interventions targeting a range of outcomes including HIV prevention, promotion of HIV/STI testing, and substance use prevention including opioids, tobacco, electronic cigarettes, vaping, and marijuana. She will discuss how she and her team have forged successful collaborations and partnerships between scientists, educators, videogame designers/developers, community-based organizations and others with the goal of developing innovative targeted interventions and educational materials for risk reduction and prevention in youth and young adults.

Zoom Meeting:


Meeting ID: 999 0457 6487
Passcode: 668939



Joy Gabrielli, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

UF Department of Clinical and Health Psychology

Read about Dr. Gabrielli's work here.




Catherine L Striley, PhD, MSW, MPE

Associate Professor

UF Department of Epidemiology

Read about Dr. Striley's work here.



Grants Funded:

Neo Gebru, UF CARE Affiliate Member and fourth year doctoral student in HEB (EDGE lab, PI: Leeman), received two new grants – (1) an F31 training grant from NIAAA and (2) a Student Research Grant from the Society of Addiction Psychology (APA, Div. 50). Neo’s project for both grants is titled “Using Behavioral Measures to Assess Change in HIV Sexual Risk-Taking Following Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) Uptake in Heavy Drinking Young Men Who Have Sex with Men.” CARE members Dr. Leeman (sponsor) and Dr. Cook (co-sponsor) sponsored the F31 grant.

Dr. John Markowitz: From: Consortium for Medical Marijuana Clinical Outcomes Research. “An Assessment of the Drug Interaction Potential Between Oral Cannabidiol (Epidiolex®) and the CES1 Substrate Methylphenidate in Healthy Volunteers” was funded for $67,500 for one year. (Markowitz PI) Awarded July 2020 

Conference Symposia / Speaking Engagements / Posters:

Dr. Erica Levitt presented in the Control of Breathing and Airway Defense (CoBAD) International Online Seminar Series on July 10. https://breathe.phhp.ufl.edu/2020/07/10/cobad-levitt/ 

Jenny L. Wilkerson, Francisco Leon, Jasmine S. Felix, Kevin Luque-Sanchez, Christopher R. McCurdy, and Lance R. McMahon. Mitragynine reverses mechanical allodynia and thermal hyperalgesia in a rat model of neuropathic pain. Poster Presentation. Federation of European Neuroscience Societies Virtual Meeting July, 2020.

UF CARE Affiliate Member & Trainee News:

UF CARE Affiliate member Shelby Blaes (mentor: Barry Setlow) successfully defended her dissertation in July and has graduated.



(UF CARE Members and Affiliate Members in Bold)

Ferguson, E., Zale, E., Ditre, J., Wesolowicz, D., Stennett, B., Robinson, M., & Boissoneault, J. (in press). CANUE: A Theoretical Model of Pain as an Antecedent for Substance Use. Annals of Behavioral Medicine. (Read more about the work of the Center for Pain Research and Behavioral Health)

James, T. G., Gebru, N. M., Ryan, S. J., Cheong, J. (In press). Measuring dimensions of HIV-related stigma among college students. Stigma and Health.  

Qian Y, Gilliland TK, Markowitz JS. The influence of carboxylesterase 1 polymorphism and cannabidiol on the hepatic metabolism of heroin. Chem Biol Interact. 2020 Jan 25;316:108914. doi: 10.1016/j.cbi.2019.108914

Wilkerson, J. L., Jiang, J., Felix, J. S., Bray, J. K., da Silva, L., Gharaibeh, R. Z., McMahon, L. R., & Schmittgen, T. D. (2020). Alterations in mouse spinal cord and sciatic nerve microRNAs after the chronic constriction injury (CCI) model of neuropathic pain. Neuroscience letters, 731, 135029. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neulet.2020.135029

Corrie LW, Stokes C, Wilkerson JL, Carroll FI, McMahon LR, Papke RL. Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor Accessory Subunits Determine the Activity Profile of Epibatidine Derivatives [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jul 20]. Mol Pharmacol. 2020;MOLPHARM-AR-2020-000037. doi:10.1124/molpharm.120.000037

Maxwell EA, King TI, Kamble SH, Raju KSR, Berthold EC, León F, Avery BA, McMahon LR, McCurdy CR, Sharma A. Pharmacokinetics and Safety of Mitragynine in Beagle Dogs. Planta Med. 2020 Jul 21. doi: 10.1055/a-1212-5475. Online ahead of print. PMID: 32693425



Submitted by Dr. Mohamed Kabbaj, Florida State University:

Congratulations to Kristin Schoepfer of the Kabbaj lab! Kristin successfully defended her dissertation entitled “Sex Differences and Effects of Estrous Stage on Hippocampalprefrontal Theta Communications”. Kristin is now on the job market.

Congratulations to Caroline Strong of the Kabbaj Lab! Caroline successfully defended her dissertation entitled “Selective manipulation of nucleus accumbens medium spiny neurons bidirectionally controls alcohol intake in rats”. In August, Caroline started her postdoc at The National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS), a branch of NIH.

Read more about Dr. Kabbaj's work here.