Biology of Drug Abuse Training Program (BDA)

This postdoctoral training grant is located in a multidisciplinary setting at the University of Michigan. The training faculty are all NIDA grantees and have expertise in the neurobiology of substance abuse, with particular emphasis on the area of opioid and psychostimulant drugs. The focus of this program is the training of Ph.D. and M.D. postdoctoral fellows in state-of-the-art approaches for studying mechanisms underlying abuse of psychoactive drugs. This includes studying the genetic, developmental and environmental factors that lead to vulnerability to substance abuse; the mode of action of drugs of abuse at the molecular, cellular, anatomical and behavioral levels; and the long-term consequences of psychoactive drugs on the brain and behavior, as mediated through mechanisms of neural plasticity. The working assumption is that the functional and structural brain remodeling associated with chronic drug use lies at the basis of tolerance, sensitization, physical dependence, and psychological addiction to these drugs. The drug abuse research community at the University of Michigan is of high quality and has a long history in the field. Beyond their individual strengths, the training faculty members have long-term scientific and training relationships with each other. These historical strengths have recently been significantly enhanced with a number of new initiatives at the University of Michigan designed to facilitate life sciences research in general, and neuroscience research in particular. They include state-of-the-art tools for mouse and rat genetics, genomics, proteomics, and informatics. Trainees also benefit from career and professional development opportunities provided by the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, and the UM Postdoctoral Association. Thus, our trainees profit from a highly sophisticated, yet extremely supportive, research and training environment.

Training Program Opportunities

Interested in working with the Biology of Drug Abuse Training Program?

Please contact John Traynor by email at [email protected].

Anonymous quotes from past trainees

“ (the) BDA has had a positive impact on my research perspective. The discussions we've had during our meetings have helped to shape the way I think about things.”

“The training I received as part of the BDA training grant has helped me transition into my new career…helped me to develop a better understanding about the communication and collaboration within large research programs…(and) helped me practice the skills I need now (in my current job)”

“The program gave me additional opportunities to present my research, which strengthened how I talk about my studies.”

“(The BDA) helped me gain perspective for the breadth of research with substance abuse.”

“The (BDA) training enhanced and further developed my research abilities and gave me the opportunity to gain more experience in grant writing and collaborations. This experience very positively impacted my career as a research development professional, in which I help other researchers develop competitive applications for funding.”

“...the professional and scientific training I received was instrumental for my career.”