Nearly everyone reading this knows someone that "drinks a little too much."
Nearly everyone reading this knows someone that has "tried to quit smoking" - tried again, and again, and again.
Many of these people will become known to the healthcare system, as they are vulnerable to a host of acute and chronic diseases.
The last 50 years of clinical and preclinical research have demonstrated that addiction is a brain disease, yet we still lack neural circuit-based treatments for substance dependence or cue reactivity at large. Now, for the first time, it appears that a noninvasive brain stimulation technique known as Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS), which is Food and Drug Administration approved to treat depression, may be able to fill this critical void in addiction treatment development.
The primary goal of my lab is to identify neural circuit abnormalities that contribute to risky tobacco, drug, and alcohol use, and to develop non-invasive therapeutics (using electromagnetic approaches) that are able to induce lasting functional changes in these circuits involved in drug craving and cognitive control.
We are pursuing this goal through a series of NIH-funded research studies and clinical performed both at the Wake Forest School of Medicine and also in collaboration with investigators across the country. We work closely with physicians and allied providers across various departments, as well as our basic science colleagues in the Center for Substance Use and Addiction – bridging the translational gap from the bench to the bedside of addiction treatment development.