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Dr. Linda Cottler Attended Opioid Response White House Summit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - UF CARE Member Dr. Linda Cottler attended the White House Summit on the Opioid Response on University and College Campuses for President Kent Fuchs on November 13th. The Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) directed the meeting with the US Surgeon General in attendance, training attendees on the proper use of Narcan Spray. There will be an effort of the University to disseminate naloxone to students soon. If interested in hearing more, contact Dr. Cottler.

Dr. Joanna Peris Appointed Opponent in Dissertation Defense at University of Gothenburg, Sweden

GOTHENBURG, SWEDEN - UF CARE Associate Director Dr. Joanna Peris will serve as Opponent for the dissertation defense of Lisa Ulenius at the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg in Gotherburg Sweden on December 12, 2019. Her dissertation supervisor is Dr. Mia Ericson and her co-mentor is Dr. Bo Soderpalm. Dr. Peris will also present a seminar on December 11 titled "Oxytocin receptor expression by VTA neurons: Interactions with binge ethanol consumption"

Inaugural UF CARE Dissertation Aid Grants Awarded to Erin Ferguson & Carly Logan

We are proud to announce the first UF CARE Dissertation Aid Grants have been Awarded to UF CARE Affiliate members Erin Ferguson (Boissoneault Laboratory) and Carly Logan (Knackstedt Laboratory).  This awards are an annual, competitive grant (funding up to three per year at up to $7,500 each).  

UF CARE Enhances Current Resources

With support from the UF McKnight Brain Institute (MBI), UF CARE is acquiring MRI-compatible EEG (electroencephalography) equipment for use by UF CARE Members and the larger scientific community.  Stay tuned for more details

UF College of Pharmacy Symposium on Pain and Addiction: December 6-8, 2019



Podcast Episode 2, Dr. Christopher McCurdy

UF CARE Podcast Episode 2: Dr. Christopher R. McCurdy, UF Department of Medicinal Chemistry

UF CARE Member Dr. Christopher R. McCurdy joins our podcast host, Dr. Oliver Grundmann, for the second episode of the UF CARE Podcast.  UF CARE Member Dr. Christopher R. McCurdy joins our podcast host, Dr. Oliver Grundmann, for the second episode of the UF CARE Podcast. READ MORE »

Robert Leeman Podcast Episode 3

Podcast Episode 3: Dr. Robert Leeman, Department of Health Education & Behavior

UF CARE Podcast Host Dr. Oliver Grundmann is joined this episode by UF CARE member Dr. Robert Leeman, Associate Professor and Mary F. Lane Endowed Professor in the Department of Health Education & Behavior (Department Profile). READ MORE »



UF CARE Holiday Party

Yon Hall North Conference Room

December 18, 2019

3:30 - 5:00 PM

Join us for refreshments and fun!

Yon Hall is located on the East Side of Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.  Look for the Holiday Lights!



James MacKillop, Ph.D.,

Peter Boris Chair in Addictions Research, the Peter Boris Director of the Centre for Addictions Research, Co-director of the Michael G. Degroote Centre for Medicinal Cannabis Research, and Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster University

3:30 – 4:30 PM, January 9, 2020

Location: Florida Gym Room 250

(Via the CBEHR Newsletter)


UF CARE Seminar Series:

(UF CARE Seminars begin at 3pm unless otherwise noted)

Visit our website for updates.

February 6, 2020

(Special McKnight Brain Institute Neuroscience Seminar)

"DNA methylcytosine oxidation in addiction"

Dr. Jian Feng

Assistant Professor of Biological Science & Neuroscience, Florida State University

9:00 AM, February 6, 2020

 Location: DeWeese Auditorium, LG-101A, McKnight Brain Institute


March 18, 2020

*UF CARE Seminar Series Invited Speaker*


March 27, 2020

(UF Department of Psychiatry Grand Rounds)


April 6, 2020

Save the Date: UF CARE Eighth Annual Symposium

"Risk/Resiliency & Recovery"

UF McKnight Brain Institute, DeWeese Auditorium

Featuring Keynote Speakers:

Dr. Charles Chavkin

Allan and Phyllis Treuer Endowed Chair of Pain Research and  Professor,  Department of Pharmacology, University of Washington (Bio)

Dr. Anna Rose Childress

Research Professor and Director, Brain-Behavioral Vulnerabilities Laboratory, Center for Studies of Addiction, Department of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine (Bio)



Berey, B. L.*, Leeman, R. F.*, Chavarria, J., & King, A. C. (2019). Relationships between generalized impulsivity and subjective stimulant and sedative responses following alcohol administration. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 33(7), 616-625.

Cansler, H.C., Wright, K.A.*, Stetzik, L.S., Wesson, D.W.* (in press). Neurochemical Organization of the Ventral Striatum's Olfactory Tubercle. Journal of Neurochemistry.

Orsini, C. A.**, Blaes, S. L.*, Dragone, R. J.*, Betzhold, S. M., Finner, A., Bizon, J. L.*, & Setlow, B.* (2020). Distinct relationships between risk taking and cocaine self-administration under short- and long-access conditions. Progress in Neuropsychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry. 98, 109791.

Ravula, A., Chandasana, H., Wall, S. C., Setlow, B.*, Febo, M.*, Bruijnzeel, A. W.*, & Derendorf, H. (in press). Pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic characterization of tetrahydrocannabinol-induced cannabinoid dependence after chronic passive cannabis smoke exposure in rats. Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research.

Setlow, B.*, Blaes, S. L.*, Burns, M., Dragone, R. J.*, & Orsini, C. A.** (in press). Using rodent models to understand interactions between gambling and substance use. Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences.

White, K.A.*, Zhang, Y-F., Zhang, Z., Bhattarai, J.P., Mi, H., Jia, X., Moberly, A.H., Peña, J.I., Fuccillo, M.V., Xu, F., Ma, M., Wesson, D.W.* (2019). Glutamatergic neurons in the piriform cortex influence the activity of D1 and D2-type receptor-expressing olfactory tubercle neurons. Journal of Neuroscience. 18;36(2):548-60.

Varga, A. G., Reid, B. T., Kieffer, B. L. & Levitt, E. S.* (2019). Differential impact of two critical respiratory centres in opioid-induced respiratory depression in awake mice. The Journal of Physiology.


Dr. Robert Leeman Awarded NIH Cooperative Agreement

UF CARE Member Dr. Robert Leeman has been awarded a NIH/NIAAA UH3 cooperative agreement to develop and test a synergistic, mobile intervention to reduce alcohol use, enhance sexual health behavior, and prevent HIV infection among young adult men who have sex with men. (Via the Center for Behavioral Economic Health Research (CBEHR) Newsletter)

Dr. Marek Schwendt Receives NIDA R03 on Methamphetamine Addiction

“Developing novel tools for targeting mGlu2(3) receptors in methamphetamine addiction” - NIH/NIDA R03DA049212, PI: Dr. Marek Schwendt.  The goal of this project is to characterize changes in glutamate mGlu2(3) receptor availability within the cortico-striatal circuit produced by chronic methamphetamine and to develop novel peptide-interference tools to reverse identified receptor maladaptations.


Collaborative Perspectives on Addiction 2020 - San Diego, CA


Keynote Address:

"WOW! Still Drinking at Your Age?"

April 2, 2020 from 9:30-10:30 AM

Sara Jo Nixon, Ph.D.*

Director, UF CARE, Professor Departments of Psychiatry and Psychology

Dr. Nixon is a Past President of APA Division 50 and a Founding Chair of the CPA Conference. Dr. Nixon uses neurobehavioral methods and models to examine the acute and chronic effects of alcohol and other drugs. Within her clinical research, her team also explores sex differences, the effects of age, and the import of ethnic/racial minority status. Because of the complex nature of substance abuse, Dr. Nixon’s work uses comprehensive behavioral assessments including neuropsychological testing, brain electrophysiology (electroencephalography and event-related potentials), and clinical research interviews. In addition to neurobehavioral research, Dr. Nixon has sustained a strong interest in community outreach and education. Her continued commitment to community outreach is reflected in her on-going work focusing on the cognitive, psychological and social concomitants of substance use. Dr. Nixon will deliver a Keynote Address at CPA 2020. (from the conference site)


"Emerging Research on Physical Pain and Substance Use: A Multimethod Examination" 

April 4, 2020 3:45-5:00 PM


Dezarie Moskal, MS (Syracuse University): Effects of Acceptance on Pain-induced Negative Affect, Alcohol Urge, and Approach Inclinations

Jeff Boissoneault, PhD* (University of Florida): Novel Mechanistic Insights into the Acute Analgesic Effects of Alcohol

Ryan Carpenter, PhD (Brown University): Opioid Craving, Use, and Pain in Daily Life in Patients with Chronic Pain Taking Prescribed

Katie Witkiewitz, PhD (University of New Mexico): Treating Chronic Pain and Opioid Misuse Among Veterans: A Mindfulness and Acceptance-based Approach

Discussant: Stephen Maisto, PhD (Syracuse University)


Shelby Blaes Selected as McKnight Brain Institute Rising Star

UF CARE Affiliate Member Shelby Blaes* has been selected as a UF McKnight Brain Institute (MBI) "Rising Star" and will be feasuring on the website. Ms. Blaes is a graduate student in the Setlow Lab.

Juhan (John) Lee Receives Certificate of Excellence

Juhan Lee (John)*, UF CARE Affiliate member and 4th year PhD student in Health Education and Behavior, received a Certificate of Excellence during the 2019 UF International Student Achievement Award Ceremony. This award honors the top international students whose visa is sponsored by the University of Florida International Center.  Mr. Lee is mentored by UF CARE Member Dr. JeeWon Cheong in statistical methodologies in pattern of tobacco use/smoking cessation among (1) adolescents/young adults; (2) individuals with cancer; and (3) individuals in an addiction treatment setting.


FIU-RCMI Health Disparities Research Seminar Series

Date: November 13, 2019

Title: "Women and Alcohol: Use Trajectories and Consequences"

Speaker: Sara Jo Nixon, Ph.D.*, Director UF CARE


American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) - Orlando, FL - December 8-11, 2019

Carly Logan*, UF CARE Affiliate Member (Knackstedt Lab)


* UF CARE Members & Affiliates

** UF CARE Alumni