As advances in basic alcoholism research slowly make their way into the realm of practical clinical treatments, a recent $9 million grant awarded to researchers at the Yale School of Medicine will help bridge the gap between research discoveries and clinical neuroscience.
The five-year grant, from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, was awarded to psychiatry professor John Krystal. It will fund the new Center for Translational Neuroscience of Alcoholism at Yale.
“The CTNA was formed to create links between basic research advances and the development of new treatments for alcoholism,” Krystal said.
The center hopes to accomplish its goals by associating itself with both clinical experts and leading scientists. Innovative studies are now being done with broad clinical implications in molecular neuroscience.
The center is designed to look at the brain on a molecular level, pinpointing what biochemical circuits are involved in the vulnerability to alcoholism, as well as the characteristics of alcohol dependence.
Organized into a Molecular Division and a Clinical Division, the center will also involve other Yale faculty members, including Joel Gelernter, the director of clinical molecular genetics in the Psychiatry Department, and Stephanie O’Malley, a psychiatry professor and the director of the Division of Substance Abuse.