Using science for a positive rather than a destructive force

I noticed this call for papers from NIDA:

Harnessing Insights from other Disciplines to Advance Drug Abuse and Addiction Research

The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is seeking submission of ideas from the general public on how to leverage specialized knowledge, methods, and tools from other disciplines to inform new directions in drug use and addiction research. NIDA aims to gain insights into new methods or approaches that could transform discovery in order to expand our basic understanding of drug use and addiction processes, accelerate the development of novel and more effective prevention and treatment strategies, and/or enhance our capacity to implement and improve upon evidence-based interventions.

NIDA plans to award $25,000 in total prizes for white papers that describe ideas.
This challenge is being issued as part of NIDA’s strategic planning process for 2016-2020. Winning proposals may be used to guide the development of new research programs within NIDA.

Key Dates:
Submission Period begins May 26, 2015, 9:00 a.m., EST.
Submission Period ends June 30, 2015, 11:59 p.m., EST.
Judging Period begins July 1, 2015 and ends July 24, 2015.
Winners Announced August 6, 2015.

Of course, the real problem here is that NIDA is only interested in pursuing its agenda – one which focuses on prohibition and abstinence, rather than harm reduction and respect of human agency. In a sane world, a request for submission like this from a government agency would be be evidence of good scientific approach, rather than generating cynicism as to their actual motives.

Still, it seems that it would be good for them to get some real submissions from the public that could lead them to better approaches, even if they aren’t likely to accept them.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Using science for a positive rather than a destructive force

  1. claygooding says:

    NIDA,,,,Close your doors and get your mouth off the government teat.

    • Duncan20903 says:


      clay, NIDA is the government teat. Well, at least it’s one of them.

      • claygooding says:

        All bureaucracies are on the govt teat,,the parasites that feed off of the policies of those bureaucracies are the profiteers and usually receive contracts through cronyism and/or little under the table gifts.

  2. Common Science says:

    NIDA may be awarding little finder’s fees to anyone that may find a loophole for them to pathologize normal behaviour for treatment, but the big winner for debauched NIDA science was paid in funds dispersed throughout the 90’s. In NIDA’s zeal to pathologize a plant with a heroic chemical solution, chemistry professor Dr. J.W. Huffman was the big prize winner! The unintended results played right into the iconoclasm of Michelle Leonhart’s expanding pulpit.

  3. DdC says:

    Using science for a positive rather than a destructive force

    Coast Lines, June 10, 2015: State expands seafood warning
    The California Department of Public Health expanded the warning not to eat sport-caught mussels and clams to include the internal organs (viscera) of scallops due to dangerous levels of a naturally occurring toxin from an algae blooms.

    Domoic Acid Poisoning

    Amnesic shellfish poisoning

    1 (800) 222-1222
    American Association of Poison Control Centers

    Symptoms and treatment
    In the brain, domoic acid especially damages the hippocampus and amygdaloid nucleus. It damages the neurons by activating AMPA and kainate receptors, causing an influx of calcium. Although calcium flowing into cells is a normal event, the uncontrolled increase of calcium causes the cell to degenerate.

    “Coming up at eleven,” local TV newscasters around the country were breathlessly promising: “how pot could save your life!” The disclosure that marijuana’s prime active ingredients can shield human beings from brain damage…

    A Day in the Life of A Dementia Sufferer
    It seems marijuana could be good for your brain. Research suggests the drug could have some benefits when administered regularly in a highly potent form. Researchers found that cannabinoids promoted generation of new neurons in rats’ hippocampuses.

    Using Pot To Save Brains!

    An Israeli researchers has flipped them around, finding that THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, may arrest some forms of brain damage in mice. The loco weed already is favored by those who suffer from chronic diseases, not to mention fans of Cypress Hill, Bob Marley and the Grateful Dead. But pharmacologist Josef Sarne of Tel Aviv University found that a minuscule amount of tetrahydrocannabinol may protect the brain after injuries from seizures, toxic drug exposure or a lack of oxygen.

    Marijuana May Live Up To Be The Elixir of Life
    A study by University of Saskatchewan researchers suggests beneficial aspects of smoking marijuana at least among rats, who appear to have sprouted new brain cells and besides benefiting from reduced depression and anxiety.

    Study Turns Pot Wisdom on Head

    Forget the stereotype about dopey potheads. It seems marijuana could be good for your brain. While other studies have shown that periodic use of marijuana can cause memory loss and impair learning and a host of other health problems down the road, new research suggests the drug could have some benefits when administered regularly in a highly potent form. Most “drugs of abuse” such as alcohol, heroin, cocaine and nicotine suppress growth of new brain cells. However, researchers found that cannabinoids promoted generation of new neurons in rats’ hippocampuses.

  4. NIDA’s approach to drugs:

    -Identify the molecular sites and systems in the brain
    where every major addictive drug has its effect.

    -Demonstrate that addiction is a treatable disease.

    -Individual treatment based on the Human Genome Project

    – Changing the course of drug abuse treatment in this
    country. NIDA engages in myriad efforts to “translate”
    the results of basic and clinical research for real-
    world use. Our goal is to get research-based treatments
    into the hands of providers in community treatment
    centers, the criminal justice system, and physicians’ offices. To that end, NIDA has established collaborative networks of researchers and practitioners, Federal agencies, and State substance abuse directors to integrate research findings into
    drug abuse treatment settings nationwide.
    . . .

    NIDA’s thinking that label’s all use of illegal drugs as abuse, and disapproving of all feel good drug effects as addiction or addiction potential, and believing the brain dictates it all is wrong. No man wants to be a slave to a drug.

    I wonder where the individual and his choices play a part in this great plan? Nowhere in this literature is a sentient thinking human being spoken of except in terms of genes and chemical slaves. Choices are dictated not by the individual, but by his chemistry, the brain and the genomes.

    Dr Carl Hart and Johann Hari have shown that addiction is not what we think it is.

    In the “nature or nurture” debate NIDA is blind to nurture.

    They need more than a few suggestions. They need a paradigm shift.

  5. jean valjean says:

    I hope David Nutt has seen this call for papers….NIDA would instantly confine his to the Memory Hole, but a published open letter would be harder to ignore.

  6. Pingback: Is the NIDA turning over a new leaf? | All Things Chronic

Comments are closed.