March 18, 2024
 

CBAM Opioid Response Network

 Dr. Shoptaw recently presented at the Recovery Science Series event, hosted by the Recovery Research Institute and sponsored by the Opioid Response Network (ORN). His talk, titled “Medications for Stimulant Use Disorder: Evidence, Infrastructure, and Cultural Factors that Support Whole Person Care,” aimed to educate clinicians on treatments for stimulant use disorder.

 

If you missed the live webinar, don’t worry! You can watch the recording on YouTube. Additionally, presentation slides are available here.

December 15, 2023 

CBAM Workgroup

If you haven’t had the chance to catch it, be sure to listen to Dr. Shoptaw featured in the Opioid Response Network Stimulants Workgroup Soundbites on Substance Use Disorders: Season 1: Stigma, Stimulants, and the Fight for Treatment Equity podcast series. The episodes offer insightful peer-to-peer discussions covering a variety of topics, including medications for treating stimulant use disorder, addressing stigma in healthcare policy and courts related to stimulants, family considerations, and issues concerning naloxone and fentanyl contamination. For more information, click here.

December 15, 2023
 

CBAM’s Dr. Shoptaw

Dr. Steven Shoptaw highlights the underutilization of evidence-based addiction treatments in a recent New York Times article. He emphasizes the wealth of research supporting positive reinforcement strategies and contingency management, citing their effectiveness in helping individuals reduce substance use. Dr. Shoptaw criticizes the reluctance of addiction treatment programs to adopt proven methodologies, stating, “There’s all these studies showing that it works, but instead of trying something that’s got actual evidence behind it, they’re pouring all this money into things that have no mark of efficacy. Zero.” Overall, Dr. Shoptaw advocates for a shift toward evidence-based practices in addiction treatment to better serve those in need. To read more, click here.

November 30, 2023

CBAM Dylan Gillis

CBAM’s Dr. Allison Rosen published findings from the mSTUDY cohort showing that substance abuse treatment of any kind helped to reduce methamphetamine usage in the study population.

Click here to read the press release.

Chris Blade

November 15, 2023

CBAM’s Chris Blades sat down with UCLA Health news to talk about our work bringing research to underserved communities and what it takes to build the kind of trust necessary to be successful and to make an impact. A link to the full article can be found here.

June 5, 2023

methadone panel

On June 1, UCLA CBAM co-sponsored an event with the USC Institute for Addiction Science which included the screening of a short film documenting the impact of COVID-19 on people who take methadone. The film was followed by a panel discussion with addiction science experts Steve Shoptaw (UCLA CBAM) and Ricky Bluthenthal (USC), drug policy advocates, the filmmakers, and someone with lived experience with methadone.

Methadone is a life-saving medication used to treat opioid use disorder. It has been available to patients for more than 60 years, but is subject to arcane regulations that have not kept pace with the science of addiction. Patients taking methadone must go to a specialty clinic to receive their daily dose of medication. Some patients must travel for hours every day to access care, causing a strain on finances and physical health and limiting their availability for work and family obligations. During the COVID-19 pandemic, regulations were loosened in order to limit the number of in-person interactions in clinics. Patients were allowed to take home anywhere from 14 to 28 days of medication and the result was incredibly positive. As COVID regulations have ended though, patients have had to return to more frequent, often daily, clinic visits, but patients and advocates want take home medication to more widely available on a permanent basis.

One panelist made the point that we are losing the “competition” with those who sell drugs. If treatment is less accessible than the drug, if treatment is more costly than the drug, if treatment is located too far away and requires the daily rearrangement of work schedules and childcare schedules, if medication is exponentially more difficult to obtain than drugs, then we have set patients up for failure.

March 13, 2023

Cigarette smoking is the leading cause of preventable death in the US and it disproportionally affects individuals with mental and substance use disorders. Methamphetamine (MA) use in particular, is accompanied by high rates of comorbid tobacco smoking. Previous research has shown that the combination of naltrexone and oral bupropion (NTX-BUP) improves smoking cessation outcomes in non-MA-using populations. The ADAPT-2 trial, a NIDA Clinical Trials Network study in which CBAM participated, proved that NTX-BUP successfully reduced MA use, but researchers looking more closely at the data also found that NTX-BUP was associated with significant reductions in self-reported cigarette smoking for those participants in the trial who smoked.

To read the article in its entirety, click here.

February 10, 2023

A Los Angeles Times investigative piece found that pharmacies across various northwestern cities in Mexico are selling counterfeit, drug-laced prescription pills and selling them as legitimate pharmaceuticals. Oxycodone pills & Adderall pills for example, both tested positive for fentanyl & methamphetamine respectively. UCLA researchers & CBAM collaborators, Drs. Chelsea Shover & David Goodman-Meza were quoted in the article as their research uncovered similar results. Dr. Shover stressed that the presence of counterfeit products containing fentanyl will result in more overdose deaths as consumers will unknowingly buy stronger doses than what is expected. It is unknown how these illegal drugs are making their way into pharmacies or how many people have died. The cause of death  is only noted on a death certificate if a physician is involved and so the data on this is incomplete. Regardless, findings from both of these articles highlight a serious public health risk and show how the rise of fentanyl based counterfeit opioids is a key driver of the on-going opioid crisis.

To read the LA Times article in its entirety, click here.

UCLA lead piece: Fentanyl, Heroin, and Methamphetamine-Based Counterfeit Pills Sold at Tourist-Oriented Pharmacies in Mexico: An Ethnographic and Drug Checking Study

January 3, 2023
 
Jordan Mobile Unit
CBAM started off 2023 on the front page of the LA Times! Our mobile unit was featured in an article about barriers to Hep C treatment. We are so proud of the work our staff is doing every day to improve the lives of fellow Angelenos. You can read the full article here.
December 20, 2022

The pandemic brought a rise in substance use with use of methamphetamine (MA) most commonly linked to overdoses. CBAM researchers and other UCLA colleagues assessed the relationship between the use of MA and preventive behaviors for COVID-19. Not surprisingly, they found that those who report using MA were significantly less likely to take measures to protect themselves from COVID, demonstrating how chronic use can be utilized as a marker for other health risk behaviors. Understanding the ways in which MA use intersects with psychosocial, behavioral, and biological factors of health is a crucial step toward improving efforts to encourage active involvement in behavioral prevention for future infectious diseases.

To read the article in its entirety, click here

 
Vine Stree Staff

October 25, 2022

CBAM would like to thank everyone who attended our Open House event on Friday, December 9. We welcomed research participants, community partners, and academic colleagues who toured the site and learned more about our current and upcoming studies.

For those of you who were unable to attend, please visit our website to learn about current studies and to take a virtual tour.

Vine Stree

Individuals experiencing homelessness are at higher risk for COVID-19 infection. Although immunization against COVID-19 is the most effective means of prevention, there are barriers that impact uptake, such as limited access to healthcare services and concerns about vaccine safety. Results of a recent study lead by Dr. Chelsea Shover, Assistant Professor at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine, were recently published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases. Dr. Shover found that it was both feasible and preliminarily effective to utilize peer ambassadors in efforts to provide COVID vaccines. Individuals are generally found to trust information that is provided to them by a peer. She estimated that one additional person was vaccinated for every hour that a peer ambassador participated in the study.

For more details on the study and results, click here

October 4, 2022

A recent UCLA study led by Dr. Jennifer Fulcher of the DGSOM Division of Infectious Diseases and in collaboration with UCLA CBAM researchers suggest certain gut bacteria could contribute to one’s risk for HIV infection. A link between chronic HIV and changes in gut bacteria is known, however, further research is needed to understand if and how these bacteria could affect HIV transition. In this study, microbiome gut samples of 27 men who have sex with men and who were positive for HIV were examined and compared to samples of 28 men who were at similar behavioral risk for infection but did not have HIV. Researchers found there was very little change in the HIV positive men’s gut bacteria during the first year. They did, however, find that the men who had acquired HIV had pre-existing differences in gut bacteria even before they became infected, compared with those who did not have HIV. Compared with uninfected at-risk controls, the men who had acquired HIV had decreased levels of Bacteroides species (a type of bacteria found in the lower intestinal tract and key in maintaining a healthy gut environment) and increased levels of Megasphaera elsdenii (a bacteria whose role is not yet entirely known). Researchers also found that prior to infection, those who had acquired HIV had elevated inflammatory cytokines and bioactive lipids, both of which are associated with systemic inflammation. These findings highlight the importance of understanding the role of the microbiome in HIV susceptibility.

To read the UCLA press release, click here. Click here to read the paper in its entirety.

September 22, 2022

Dr. Steven Shoptaw was recently interviewed by a healthcare reporter at Clinical Trials Arena in London. He was quoted in their article entitled, “Is pharma neglecting the unmet need of substance use disorder therapies?”, which explores possible reasons behind the lack of pharma sponsorship in clinical trials investigating new addiction treatments. The article points out that, while there are currently hundreds of active or planned clinical trials investigating treatments for substance use disorder, the vast majority of them are being sponsored by academic institutions and not pharmaceutical companies. The article suggests that the stigma surrounding substance use may be calling into question the profitability of treatment medications. There is also mention of the lack of flexibility in regulatory arena, which often requires a medication to result in complete abstinence from substances when a reduction in use would be of significant benefit to many patients. To read more, click here.

August 30, 2022

NBC logo

A report published in the Lancet Psychology found that high-potency Cannabis may increase the risk of psychosis and addiction. Researchers found individuals with first episodes of cannabis-related psychosis were more likely to have been using products with high levels of THC. Animal studies suggest higher doses of THC are more likely to cause addiction. This research likewise showed increased risk of addiction in those using high-potency products in comparison to low potency cannabis. Dr. Ziva Cooper of the UCLA Center for Cannabis and Cannabinoids noted the importance of understanding the long term health outcomes that may be associated with these types of products in comparison to what has been more traditionally available. Dr. Cooper further highlights how little research exists on the topic and notes the need for further studies especially those that look more closely at daily users.

Click here to read more.

August 16, 2022

WP logo

According to recent data from the National Center for Health Statistics, more than 100,000 people died of drug related overdoses in 2021. Prescription pain pills followed by waves in heroin, fentanyl, and meth use have all contributed to the rising overdose epidemic. Challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic including social isolation, depression, and limited access to treatment, have contributed to these numbers. Overdose deaths spiked to unseen levels during the beginning of the pandemic, especially amongst younger Americans and in rural areas of the country where access to treatment is more limited, and this number continues to grow. Stimulants such as methamphetamine made up about half of overdose deaths in California and opioid overdoses, especially fentanyl, have jumped more than 27%. UCSF Professor and CBAM colleague, Dr. Daniel Ciccarone, highlighted this wave of methamphetamine use and noted that the increasing rate of overdose may flatten post-pandemic however, the number of people using drugs will continue to rise. This increase may be due in part to the increasing use and accessibility of fentanyl into the drug supply. Researchers within CBAM and externally, continue to explore the overdose epidemic and how to address growing concerns such as increasing access to treatment and medication services for opioid and stimulant use disorder.

To read the article in its entirety, click here.

July 15, 2022

LA Times Logo

A contingency management program is currently helping people in LA’s Skid Row community stop using methamphetamine. Contingency management incentivizes individuals, most commonly monetarily, for positive behavioral changes. CBAM’s Dr. Shoptaw was interviewed for the article and noted the importance of these interventions in going beyond just paying people to do what they should be doing, “This is an intervention that actually stimulates the brain to work in different ways so that their goals are met.” Studies have proven that this type of intervention is highly effective in the treatment of substance use disorders and yet it is not widely utilized under federally funded health programs. Dr. Siddarth Puri, an addiction psychiatrist at LAC+USC Medical Center who is currently using contingency management as treatment through a foundation-funded program stated, “This would be the gold standard if it was a medication.”

To read the article in its entirety, click here 

July 8, 2022

EA Logo

Researchers from CBAM and Charles Drew University of Medicine and Science collaborated on a recent report entitled, Equity and Access: A Roadmap to Improving Vaccination Equity in South Los Angeles. This report provides insights on how to reach communities of color and the underserved to educate, build trust, and disseminate vaccines in South Los Angeles given historical experiences with medical mistrust. The findings from this report are based on data collected from three key groups in South Los Angeles: community members (i.e., essential workers), community groups & leaders (i.e., clergy, faith-based leaders, and leaders of community-based organizations policy makers), and clinical providers in South Los Angeles.
The goals of this project were to:

  • Facilitate community, public, private, and governmental partnerships to reduce COVID-19 vaccine inequity.
  • Educate communities of color in South LA about the COVID-19 vaccines through virtual town halls.
  • Navigate communities of color in South LA on how to access available COVID-19 vaccines.

In listening to affected communities and those who serve them, we were able to identify factors that impacted the initial roll out of vaccines in Black and Latina/o/x communities. These findings are intended to guide future policies that fund and provide access to health prevention services for community agencies and clinics in South Los Angeles. Funding for this work was provided through a grant from the California Community Foundation.

To read the report in its entirety, click here

June 1, 2022

NEJM logo

Authors of a recent article featured in The New England Journal of Medicine discuss the importance and demand for new harm reduction approaches and substance use disorder treatments given the rise of overdose deaths during the COVID-19 pandemic. Overdose-prevention centers provide a safe space for individuals to consume pre-obtained drugs in controlled settings and have been associated with significant reductions in opioid overdose. Section 856 of the Controlled Substances Act however, creates uncertainty and challenges for organizations operating or using overdose prevention centers. Authors suggest the Biden administration publicly declare they would not interfere with public health interventions. They likewise suggest the administration publicly state that Section 856 of the Controlled Substances Act does not apply to legally sanctioned overdose-prevention centers and that they should work with Congress to modify current legislation to exempt overdose prevention centers from Section 856. Overall, this type of evidence-driven approach would aid in ending the drug overdose epidemic.

Read the article in its entirety here

May 16, 2022

AMA Logo

From 2020-2021, a dramatic increase in the use of illicit fentanyl as well as methamphetamine and cocaine has dramatically contributed to overdose deaths exceeding 100,000. Dr. Bobby Mukkamala, chair of the American Medical Association (AMA), notes addressing current health inequities that might negatively affect minority populations and people of color is especially important as structurally marginalized populations are disproportionately affected by the drug overdose crisis. Current health equity research has addressed the struggles patients from marginalized racial and ethnic groups face and what can be done to support these patients. This research highlights how diseases of disparity often take place in systemically oppressed communities that struggle with inequitable access to care. Dr. Edwin Chapman, a founding member and secretary of the board of directors at the Leadership Council for Healthy Communities, further notes the importance of addressing racism and oppression amongst Black and brown communities when working towards eliminating health inequalities. Racial and ethnic inequities in incarceration patterns compared with access to addiction treatment must also be further explored. Dr. Mukkamala further highlights the need for increased access to a variety of harm reduction efforts (i.e. increased access to naloxone, syringe service programs, drug test strips) in order to address the nation’s opioid epidemic.

This work at the AMA is closely aligned to the goals and objectives of many of our CBAM projects. We strive to reduce substance use by increasing access to quality evidence-based services in communities impacted by healthcare disparities.

To read AMA’s article in its entirety and learn more, click here

May 13, 2022

Jesse Clark

CBAM’s own Dr. Jesse Clark was recently interviewed by NPR about his experience with both the COVID and HIV pandemics and how development of the COVID vaccines have accelerated the pace of development of an HIV vaccine.

Click here for the interview feature in its entirety.

May 3, 2022

Methamphetamine use is a growing global concern that has hampered efforts to address opioid use disorder and HIV infection. Evidence-based behavioral interventions (EBIs) to reduce methamphetamine exist, but current research on optimal EBI combinations to reduce methamphetamine use is limited. In Vietnam, methamphetamine co-use is prevalent in people receiving methadone maintenance treatment (MMT) for opioid use disorder. In response to this co-epidemic, CBAM’s Drs. Michael Li and Steve Shoptaw are collaborating with Dr. Giang Le of Hanoi Medical University to test a type-1 effectiveness-implementation hybrid design of EBIs to reduce methamphetamine use among patients from multiple MMT clinics in Vietnam. This article details the study design, procedures, implementation strategies, challenges, and planned analysis to ascertain effects on methamphetamine use, HIV viral suppression, and HIV risk behaviors. Findings may inform effectiveness and future scale-up of EBI combinations for methamphetamine use reduction among MMT patients, especially in underserved communities.

Click here to read the paper in its entirety

April 18, 2022

A NIDA funded analysis of data from the 2018 National Survey of Substance Abuse Treatment Services assessed availability of HIV testing and counseling services in U.S. substance use treatment facilities. Among these facilities, investigators found only three in ten offered HIV testing. Additionally, HIV testing was more likely to be offered in facilities that offered medication for opioid use disorder. Overall, in only three states was HIV testing offered by at least 50% of facilities. These findings “suggest a missed opportunity for early identification of HIV among people receiving treatment for substance use disorders.” Click here to read the article in its entirety.

April 13, 2022

HIV diagnosis and prevalence among people who inject drugs has increased alarmingly in recent years. Syringe services programs (SSPs) are both economic and highly effective in reducing HIV transmission and critical to the success of the “Ending the HIV Epidemic” initiative. An in-depth literature review was conducted to assess how critical a role SSPs play in addressing this growing concern. This review concluded SSPs “have the highest impact in HIV prevention when combined with access to medications for substance use disorder and antiretroviral therapy.” SSPs that provide restriction free services and expand access to harm-reduction and further clinical services (i.e. peer outreach) are even more effective. Authors note that geographic and service coverage of SSPs or similar programs is still limited in the US and increasing this coverage requires funding, strong & sustainable policy, and community support. Furthermore, authors note SSPs are vital to all 4 strategies of the Ending the HIV Epidemic Initiative: Prevent, Diagnose, Treat, and Respond and thus critical to disease prevention efforts.

To read the paper in its entirety click the following link

 

April 11, 2022

carlat logo

The Carlat Psychiatry Podcast, a digital program that reviews evidence-based psychiatry, recently provided an overview of the history and pharmacology of methamphetamine use disorder. In this segment, the ADAPT-2 trial published in The New England Journal of Medicine (for which CBAM’s Vine St. Clinic served as a clinical research site and Dr. Shoptaw co-authored) was discussed. To hear the podcast and learn more about the basics of methamphetamine use disorder and the current novel treatment options in consideration, click here

April 1, 2022

breathe logo

Los Angeles County is launching a guaranteed income project known as “Breathe” to help address financial uncertainty and provide eligible residents with needed monetary assistance. The program will provide 1,000 selected residents with $1,000 per month for three years.

Applicants must meet all of the following requirements:

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Live in a Los Angeles County neighborhood that falls at or below 100% of the County’s Area Median Household Income (AMI)
  • Have a household income that falls at or below 100% of the County’s AMI, for a single person household, or have a household income that falls at or below 120% of the County’s AMI for households with two or more persons
  • Have been negatively financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Not be currently enrolled in another Guaranteed Income project offered by the County, a city, or other public or private entity

Click here to apply before the April 13 deadline or visit the program website for more details.

March 3, 2022

The LEAD program was developed to support early-career investigators from racial/ethnic minority groups that are traditionally underrepresented in the substance use disorder research field. This program is integrated within the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) Clinical Trials Network (CTN) and serves as a platform for training early career research scientists. Based at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), this 3-year training program utilizes a team mentoring approach. Visiting scholars spend three summers in a funded 4-week intensive program at UCSF and during the academic year, will work with their primary mentor to collaborate on substance use disorder treatment research conducted in the CTN, develop a professional research network, and conduct a pilot study that will serve as a preliminary study for subsequent NIH funding. The 2022 summer program begins on June 20th and ends July 15th. Please access the following flyer for eligibility criteria and more information or visit this link to learn more about the program.

LEAD_Program_Recruitment_Flyer_2_15_2022

For consideration, apply before the April 15, 2022 application deadline.

February 2, 2022

cbam truck

CBAM’s mobile clinic team continues its conduct of the INTEGRA study bringing treatment for opioid use disorder, as well as HIV prevention and treatment, directly to those who need it. This past week, we were at the LA Grand Hotel. The Hotel is currently a Project Room Key site, a collaborative effort by the State, County and the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority to secure hotel and motel rooms for vulnerable people experiencing homelessness. It provides a way for people who don’t have a home to stay inside to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but it also provides an excellent opportunity for us to bring much needed care to this community. For more information on the INTEGRA study, visit the HIV Prevention Trials Network website.

January 25, 2022

Methamphetamine (MA) related overdose deaths have increased dramatically in the United States in the past several years. MA use is linked to a variety of adverse health related conditions and can complicate the management of chronic and infectious disease and severely impact one’s overall quality of life. There are currently no FDA approved medications for the treatment of Methamphetamine Use Disorder and there are a limited number of effective behavioral treatment options. Researchers at UCLA, including CBAM’s own Dr. Joy Chudzysnki, found that exercise significantly reduced craving in a sample of participants enrolled in a residential treatment program for methamphetamine use. Those participants reporting less craving during treatment had less MA use after discharge, suggesting that incorporation of a structured exercise program for individuals with MA-use disorder into existing treatment programs may improve outcomes.

Click here to read the paper in its entirety.

December 27, 2021

HTPN Logo

The UCLA Vine Street Clinic served as one of the study sites for the HPTN 083 trial, a study that sought to compare the efficacy of cabotegravir (CAB LA) to daily oral tenofovir/emtricitabine (TDF/FTC) for HIV prevention. Data obtained from this and other studies helped inform the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s approval of long-acting cabotegravir (CAB-LA) injections for the prevention of HIV. “Results of this NIAD/NIH sponsored and co-funded study showed that CAB-LA injected once every eight weeks was superior to daily oral TDF/FTC for HIV prevention among cisgender men and transgender women who have sex with men (HPTN 083) and cisgender women (HPTN 084). Both studies also demonstrated that CAB-LA was well-tolerated, offering a new and important pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) option for individuals at risk for HIV infection.” The protocol chair for HPTN 083 is Dr. Raphael Landovitz, long-time CBAM colleague and Co-Director of the Center for HIV Identification, Prevention and Treatment Services.

To read the full press release and learn more about the HPTN 083 study, click here | HPTN 083

December 7, 2021

“A study of HIV-positive black and Latino men who have sex with men finds the use of methamphetamine combined with intimate partner violence boosted the activity of genes that regulate the body’s inflammatory and antiviral functions.” Researchers of this study-including CBAM’s own Drs. Michael Li, Mariah Kalmin & Steven Shoptaw, sought to further understand the link between stress biology and substance use disorders as these findings demonstrate that both social challenges and substance use play a role in immune function in people living with HIV.

Read the full UCLA Press Release here as well as the published article in its entirety here

November 18, 2021

Ascend lobo

The University of New South Wales Sydney (UNSW) & National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre (NDARC) recently invited Dr. Steven Shoptaw to lecture at a collaborative seminar titled, ASCEND: Therapeutic Interventions for Methamphetamine Dependence. Methamphetamine dependence is a growing public health concern in Australia and many parts of the world. There are currently no approved pharmacotherapies for its treatment, but researchers have been evaluating potentially effective medications as possible treatment options. The ASCEND program (Advancing the health or people who use drugs: hepatitis C and drug dependence) webinar presented an overview of the evidence for treatment of methamphetamine dependence and included lectures from UNSW Professor, Dr. Rebecca McKetin and UNSW Professor and director of the National Centre for Clinical Research on Emerging Drugs (NCCRED), Dr. Nadine Ezard. A recording of the webinar can be found here. To read more about NDARC, its current research, and the work being done under the ASCEND program, please visit the following: NDARC & ASCEND

November 3, 2021

Dr. Shoptaw was given the honor to present a talk, ‘Medications as Foundation for Stimulant Use Disorder Treatment: Is it Time?’, at this year’s annual Eric D. Hadar Distinguished Lecture at the Columbia University Department of Psychiatry. Since its inception in 2016, the Eric D. Hadar Distinguished Lecture series has broadened the discussion and understanding of current research findings related to substance use disorders and their available treatment options. Columbia’s Division of Substance Use Disorders is among the nation’s leading addiction psychiatry programs, according to U.S. World and News Report, and we are honored to have one of our own leading and participating in this dialogue.

To read more on the Eric D. Hadar Distinguished Lecture series including past lectures, the Eric D. Hadar Family Foundation, or the Columbia University Department of Psychiatry, please visit the following link.

Virtual Program: 2021Hadar lecture programVirtual_V2

March 1, 2021

Q2i logo

Q2i is a digital health company that develops technology designed to improve treatment for Substance Use Disorder (SUD). OARS technology is utilized by Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) program providers, an approach that combines medication (i.e. methadone and buprenorphine) with counseling and behavioral therapies to reduce and treat Opioid Use Disorder (OUD). The application developed by Q2i features a healthcare team portal along with a patient mobile application that allows providers to examine real time reporting and analytics with individual patient performance. Together, these features help support a secure patient/provider connection and improve adherence to treatment plans. On February 25, 2021 Q2i announced that the National Institutes of Health had approved for their OARS software to proceed to a Phase II clinical trial. Representing UCLA as Q2i’s academic partner, our very own Dr. Shoptaw and Dr. Mariah Kalmin currently lead the research team on this project and emphasize the importance of this type of technology in supporting OUD patients seeking treatment. Q2i CEO Steven Jenkins also highlights the importance of such software platforms in connecting patients and providers especially given the rise of remote care during the COVID-19 pandemic. To read more about the current progress of this application and feedback from study sites that participated in the previous phase of the clinical trialclick here.

February 16, 2021

Mobile truck

As you may have read in our annual report, CBAM is preparing to go mobile! We are procuring a mobile clinic equipped with two rooms that will allow us to bring addiction treatment and HIV prevention directly to those most in danger of opioid overdose. This new research project is led by our own Dr. Shoptaw and coordinated through the HIV Prevention Trials Network with collaborating sites in Houston, Pittsburgh, Washington DC, and the Bronx. We just received the first picture of our new clinic from the manufacturer!

February 11, 2021

Big-south-west-logo

Dr. Madhukar Trivedi recently presented the paper featured on The New England Journal of Medicine titled “Naltrexone plus Bupropion in Methamphetamine Use Disorder” during the Biweekly CTN Big South/West Node Journal Club. The Journal Club promotes an educational environment where colleagues can discuss and evaluate academic literature and identify new research methods or findings in their respective fields. To view the 1/27/21 Journal Club session click here.

January 22, 2021

Dr. Shoptaw recently co-authored a paper in The New England Journal of Medicine, titled “Naltrexone plus Bupropion in Methamphetamine Use Disorder.” Currently, there is no medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of methamphetamine use disorder. In the paper, Dr. Shoptaw and co-authors discuss a clinical trial that examined two drugs-Naltrexone and Bupropion-used in combination to help those with methamphetamine use disorder avoid relapse. Bupropion is a stimulant like anti-depressant that acts through the norepinephrine and dopamine systems and might alleviate the dysphoria associated with methamphetamine withdrawal that drives continued use. Naltrexone is an opioid-receptor antagonist effective for the treatment of opioid use disorder. The clinical trial found that 1 in 9 patients who used the two medications together saw signs of improvement. These results suggest that taken in combination, Naltrexone and Bupropion might be effective for the treatment of severe methamphetamine use disorder. Dr. Nora Volkow- director of the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA), recently spoke to National Public Radio (NPR) about the study. For more information about the interview, visit here.

To read the paper in its entirety visit the New England Journal of Medicine’s website or click here.