To reverse the opioid crisis that continues to grip the nation, the NIH has awarded $945 million in total fiscal year 2019 funding for grants, contracts and cooperative agreements across 41 states. Research effort aims to improve treatments for chronic pain, curb the rates of opioid use disorder (OUD) and overdose and achieve long-term recovery from opioid addiction.
In July 2018, Christopher Austin, PhD, Director of NIH's National Center for Accelerating Translational Science (NCATS), first introduced The Helping to End Addiction Long-term Initiative (NIH HEAL Initiative), aimed at tackling the opioid crisis, and outlined plans to apply NCATS’ translational science approach to the initiative.
In the October 2019 NCATS newsletter, Austin reported that NIH has announced $945 million in funding for projects in 41 states to develop and apply evidence-based solutions to reverse the crisis. The trans-NIH research effort aims to improve treatments for chronic pain, curb the rates of opioid use disorder (OUD) and overdose and achieve long-term recovery from opioid addiction.
Seven of the NIH HEAL Initiative awards went to UCLA CTSI partner institutions. See below for those awardees. They include a number of CTSI-supported investigators including: Dr. Ali Khademhosseini, a CTSI Catalyst awardee; Dr. Stephanie Kristin Seidlits, a CTSI R Bridge and Voucher awardee; Dr. Maidment, a CTSI/CART awardee; Dr. Sean Young, an investigator for the CTSI Network Resources program; Dr. Larissa Jeanette Mooney, a CTSI Voucher awardee and 2010 CTSI Training Program in Translational Science alumni in the certificate program; Dr. Yih-Ing Hser, received CTSI informatics support on another opioid study that was highlighted in a UCLA press release; Dr. Kimberly Gregory, CTSI Integrating Special Populations co-leader and CTSI Community Engagement and Research Program investigator; and Dr. Brennan Spiegel, CTSI site leader for Cedars-Sinai Medical System and CTSI Community Engagement and Research Program investigator.
NCATS is actively participating in several NIH HEAL Initiative projects, including the CTSA Trial Innovation Network, ASPIRE Design Challenges and Tissue Chips to Model Nociception, Addiction and Overdose.