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Research Programs

NIDA Core Center of Excellence: “Center on Intersystem Regulation by Drugs of Abuse”  
Program Director: Ellen M. Unterwald, PhD  (P30 DA013429)

The NIDA-funded Core Center grant supports preclinical research on drugs of abuse and addiction, with translational applications. Major integrative themes of the Center are 1) mechanisms of addiction and identification of novel therapeutic targets; 2) effects of drugs of abuse on HIV infection and other endpoints such as pain and behavior; 3) neuroimmune interactions, including cross-talk between opioids, cannabinoids and chemokines as related to pain, inflammation, and HIV; and 4) analysis of drug combinations. The Cores and their investigators have the ability to attack research problems from multiple levels, with expertise in molecular, cellular, immunological, pharmacological and behavioral approaches. This unique aspect of the Center encourages multi-disciplinary collaborations to best address novel hypotheses and significantly advances individual research programs. The NIDA Core Center provides cutting-edge technologies for many research projects related to NIDA's mission, as well as to our NIDA-supported trainees. The Center enhances synergy and productivity, and stimulates innovative scientific discoveries that have resulted in new knowledge to bear on substance abuse. The Core facilities enable individual researchers to extend their funded projects, bring new researchers into the field of substance abuse, and create a scientifically exciting atmosphere.

The Research Cores of the NIDA P30 Center are:

  • Animal Models and Behavioral Testing Core
  • Biochemical Pharmacology Core
  • Cell and Immunology Core
  • Integrative Pharmacology Core
  • Molecular Core
  • Pilot Project Core