The Child Mind Institute On the Shoulders of Giants Scientific Symposium Honors Dr. Nora Volkow, Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse
Nonprofit’s symposium focuses on brain science and addiction research
Source Newsroom: Child Mind.org
Newswise — New York, NY, October 3, 2013 - The Child Mind Institute (childmind.org) presented ‘On the Shoulders of Giants,’ a scientific symposium honoring the recipient of the 2013 Child Mind Institute Distinguished Scientist Award, Nora Volkow, MD, for her extraordinary contributions to brain science and addiction research. The event celebrated her exemplary work in the field as a researcher, the director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), and as an accomplished author and mentor.
Dr. Volkow has done extensive work in addiction as a disease of the human brain and the use of brain imaging to investigate the toxic effects and addictive properties of drugs of abuse. Her team at NIDA has utilized imaging and research from the open science data sharing initiatives that the Child Mind Institute continues to develop.
“Dr. Volkow’s research has transformed our understanding of addiction, with immensely important implications not only for treatment but also for how we as a culture think about addicts,” said Dr. Harold Koplewicz, president of the Child Mind Institute. “The reason we call this celebration ‘On the Shoulders of Giants’ is to honor not only Dr. Volkow's work, but also her role in nurturing the next generation of scientists. We are honored to have three Giants in the field present today and to be able to thank them for advancing the field for all of us.”
Her protégé Gene-Jack Wang, MD, Professor of Radiology at the State University of New York at Stony Brook and his protégé, Michael Michaelides, PhD, postdoctoral fellow, Mt. Sinai School of Medicine were presenters at the conference. Dr. Wang presented Common Brain Mechanisms in Addiction and Obesity and Dr. Michaelides concluded with Brain Mechanisms at the Interface of Appetitive Drive and Energy Regulation: Implications for Psychiatric Disease.
The program illustrated how strong mentors and unchecked curiosity can lead to the innovative thinking of the future. While maintaining strong links back to Dr. Volkow's work, Drs. Michaelides and Wang described insights and ambitions that verged at times on science fiction come to the present. All of this because she had been called to work hard and "give it all away," as Dr. Koplewicz noted of the scientific mindset. Dr. Volkow's generosity must have been contagious—Dr. Wang said he had never even considered neuroscience until he met her. Dr. Michaelides had intended to pursue finance until he studied with Dr. Wang.
In keeping with the symposium’s focus on the inspiring the next generation of researchers, the Child Mind Institute also presented its second annual Rising Scientist Awards to ten exceptional high school seniors from the New York City metropolitan area. Each Rising Scientist demonstrated drive, determination, and commitment to scientific research. For more information on the 2013 Rising Scientists Awards please visit: childmind.org/risingscientists
About the Child Mind Institute
The Child Mind Institute is dedicated to transforming mental health care for children everywhere. Founded by Dr. Harold S. Koplewicz and Brooke Garber Neidich, our organization is committed to finding more effective treatments for childhood psychiatric and learning disorders, building the science of healthy brain development, and empowering children and their families with help, hope, and answers.
The Child Mind Institute's commitment to open science and interdisciplinary collaboration in children's mental health research accelerates the application of scientific knowledge to clinical intervention. To learn more, visit childmind.org/science.
About the Distinguished Scientist Award:
Each year the Child Mind Institute's Scientific Research Council, comprised of 12 leading scientists from ten nationally renowned academic institutions, selects an exceptional researcher for the Child Mind Institute Distinguished Scientist Award. The award honors outstanding contributions to clinical or basic science in child and adolescent psychiatry, psychology, or developmental neuroscience. The On the Shoulders of Giants scientific symposium focuses on how their research, and the Distinguished Scientists themselves, has influenced subsequent generations of researchers. Past honorees include Nobel Laureate, Eric Kandel, MD, Judith Rapoport, MD, and Jerome Kagan, PhD.
On the Shoulders of Giants and the annual Child Mind Institute Distinguished Scientist Award are made possible by the generous support of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.