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Lisa A. Marsch, PhD, Invited Keynote Speaker at Annual DEA Conference

Dr. Lisa Marsch, a Senior Principal Investigator at NDRI, was invited to
provide the keynote address on "Adolescent Opiate Use: Recent Trends,
Characteristics and Effective Treatments" at the annual meeting of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) held in Long Branch, New Jersey on March 4, 2005. Heroin and other opiate use among youth was the main topic of this year's meeting, and Dr. Marsch was asked to provide the most up to date information from scientific research with this young age group. This meeting was co-sponsored by the New Jersey Prevention Network, NJ Department of Human Services, NJ State Police, NJ National Guard and Saint Barnabas Health Care Systems.

The prevalence of heroin and other opiate use among adolescents has markedly increased in the past decade. Despite these trends, little scientific research has characterized this emerging population of opioid-abusing youth. In her presentation, Dr. Marsch provided an overview of what it known to date about this young population. She also presented an overview of her novel scientific research funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) in which she is developing and evaluating various treatments for opioid-dependent youth, including behavioral therapy and pharmacological treatment with buprenorphine medication. The New Jersey location of the meeting was particularly germane, given that New Jersey has the highest purity of heroin in the U.S. (according to DEA Domestic Monitoring Program data) and is one of many states experiencing high rates of heroin and other opiate abuse among youth.

March, 2005