(PI: Ralph E. Tarter, Pharmaceutical Sciences, Pitt). This is a multidisciplinary P50 project supporting the NIDA Center for Education and Drug Abuse Research (CEDAR) established more than 15 years ago at Pitt with the goal of elucidating the genetic, biobehavioral and environmental factors on the development of substance use disorder (SUD) consequent to use of illegal drugs. The focus is on linking SUD etiology and prevention. Studies are conducted on 775 families; the probands are men with lifetime presence or absence of SUD consequent to use of an illicit drug. The children of SUD men form the high average risk group whereas offspring of men without SUD are assigned to low average risk groups. These two groups are currently in varying stages of follow-up evaluation between the ages 12 and 30. The Center has already shown that they can predict in 10-12 year old youths cannabis use disorder by age 22, with approximately 70% accuracy.
FRP1 will be supported by Cores A and C. Core A has already initiated the application of their Adaboost machine-learning algorithm to sieve through the large amount of data collected by FRP1 in order to understand the etiology of SUD. In addition, Core C is working closely with the co-PI of the FRP, Dr. Michael M Vanyukov (PI of CEDAR Neurogenetics Module, and Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Psychiatry and Human Genetics at Pitt), for genomics-scale analysis of SUD neurogenetic data. Data analysis and predictive-modeling software developed in Cores A and C will contribute to enhancing the CEDAR instrumentation being developed for identifying youths at high risk for SUD.