Addiction Symposium

UTHSC to Host Addiction Symposium May 4 


The University of Tennessee Health Science Center’s College of Medicine will host its second Addiction Symposium May 4 from 12 to 2 p.m. CDT.

The online symposium is free and open to health care practitioners and the public. The UTHSC Addiction Symposium will be live streamed via Zoom.

Drug misuse and addiction is a pressing and often unmet health problem throughout Tennessee and nationwide. Although it has attracted widespread attention in legislatures and the media, the epidemic of opioid abuse is only one dimension of drug abuse that afflicts individuals, families, and communities – with profound, long-standing, and often tragic medical and psychosocial outcomes.

The Addiction Symposium is designed as a concentrated update on key issues in drug misuse and addiction. Experts in addictive disorders will address a wide spectrum of basic and clinical topics from the genetics of addiction to nicotine and predictive indices of human addiction, as well as the clinical presentation and diagnosis of addictions.

“As the state’s public College of Medicine, it is our responsibility to provide leadership through public education for physicians, health care personnel and the lay public that highlights advances, emerging trends, and standards in medicine,” said Burt Sharp, MD, event organizer and Distinguished Professor in the Departments of Genetics, Genomics, and Informatics and Medicine in the UTHSC College of Medicine.

The agenda for the event is as follows:

12:00 – 12:07 p.m.
Introduction to the Misuse and Addiction to Opiates, Alcohol, and Nicotine and Synopsis of Opiate Addiction in Tennessee
Burt Sharp, MD
Distinguished Professor
Departments of Genetics, Genomics, and Informatics and Medicine
UTHSC College of Medicine

12:07 – 12:12 p.m.
The Severity of the Addiction Epidemic in Tennessee and the Leadership Needed by UTHSC in the Discovery of Novel Treatment
Randy Boyd
President, the University of Tennessee

12:12 – 12:30 p.m.
Building Strong Brains During a Pandemic
Rev. Charlie Caswell
Director, Legacy of Legends

12:30 – 12:48 p.m.
Approach to Diagnosing Addictive Disorders
Roland H. Cowan, MD, PhD
Harrison Distinguished Professor and Chair
Department of Psychiatry
UTHSC College of Medicine

12:48 – 1:06 p.m.
Transmissible Liability for Addiction; a Developmental Perspective
Maureen Reynolds, PhD
Research Associate Professor, Pharmaceutical Science
University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy

1:06 – 1:11 p.m.
A National Center for Highly Replicable Animal Studies of Addiction
Robert Williams, PhD
Professor and Chair
Department of Genetics, Genomics, and Informatics
UTHSC College of Medicine

1:11 – 1:23 p.m.
Genetic Factors Influencing Socially-Acquired Voluntary Nicotine Intake in Rats
Hao Chen, MD, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Pharmacology, Addiction Science, and Toxicology
UTHSC College of Medicine

1:23 – 1:35 p.m.
Factors that Influence the Severity of Ethanol’s Effects in Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
Kristin Hamre, PhD
Associate Professor
Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology
UTHSC College of Medicine

1:35 – 1:50 p.m.
Combating the Stigma of Substance Use Treatment Seeking in the African American Community
Karen Derefinko, PhD
Assistant Professor
Departments of Preventive Medicine and Pharmacology, Addiction Science, and Toxicology
UTHSC College of Medicine

1:50 – 2:00 p.m.
Highlights and the Importance of Training Clinicians and Affiliated Personnel
Scott Strome, MD
Robert Kaplan Executive Dean, Vice Chancellor for Clinical Affairs
UTHSC College of Medicine

For registration information, to watch the symposium, and to view the full recording after the event,visit the event website.