| August 13, 2003
Charles P. O'Brien, MD, PhD, Renowned
Addictions Researcher, Receives Lifetime Achievement in
(Philadelphia, PA) -- Charles
P. O'Brien, MD, PhD, Vice Chair of the Department
of Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania School
of Medicine and Director of Psychiatric Research
at the Philadelphia Veterans Administration Medical
Center (VAMC), has been named the 2003 recipient of
the Nathan B. Eddy Memorial Award for Lifetime Achievement
in Research, in recognition of his extensive work in
the field of addictions.
The Nathan B. Eddy Award is presented annually by the
national College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD),
which is the oldest research society in the United States
devoted to addressing issues of drug dependence and
abuse. Eddy, for whom the achievement award is named,
was a pioneer in drug-use studies.
"For decades, the College has been a major national
presence in substance abuse research," O'Brien said.
"I'm honored to be recognized for my work by such a
prestigious and dedicated organization."
O'Brien is an expert in pre-clinical and clinical psychopharmacology;
mechanisms of drug dependence; endogenous opiods; conditioning;
and the pharmacological treatment of addictive disorders.
He holds the Kenneth Appel Professorship of Psychiatry
at Penn, and is Director of Penn's Center for Studies
of Addiction. O'Brien founded the addiction treatment
program at the Philadelphia VMAC in 1971; until 2002
he was also Chief of Psychiatry, responsible for the
treatment of over 9,000 psychiatric patients. O'Brien's
clinical research program has significantly advanced
scientific understanding of addictive disorders. His
group's findings, reported in more than 400 publications,
address problems associated with the use and abuse of
nicotine, alcohol, cocaine and heroin. O'Brien and his
team have discovered new treatments for alcoholism and
other addictive orders. They have created new methods
for measuring addictive severity and they also evaluate
various medications, and develop and test behavioral
A native of New Orleans, O'Brien earned his MD and
PhD at Tulane University. Before coming to Penn, he
held residency positions in Medicine, Neurology and
Psychiatry at Harvard University, Tulane, and the University
of London. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine
of the National Academy of Sciences in 1991. He has
received numerous national research awards as well as
an honorary doctorate from the University of Bordeaux.
He is past President of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology
and the Association for Research in Nervous and Mental
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