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Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies

PLNDP Medical Student Associate UPDATE
January 2000

Dear Colleague,

The topic for this newsletter is the relationship between substance abuse and violence or criminal activity. Much of the current research has emphasized the frequent interdependence of these social phenomena and revealed new insights. Intuitive notions suggest that substance abuse often leads to criminal behavior, but many research projects have concluded that, often, substance abuse may be an outcome of violence and hostility. These results question the causal relationship between drug dependence and other harmful activity. Two articles on this topic are enclosed; for abstracts, see reverse. The first article, “Early Deviance and Related Risk Factors in the Children of Narcotic Addicts,” concludes that socially “deviant behavior” during adolescence often precedes drug use and addiction. The second article, “Domestic Violence Before and After Alcoholism Treatment: A Two-Year Longitudinal Study,” shows that patterns of violent behavior can be interrupted by effective substance abuse treatment.

Summer Opportunities

As you begin to make plans for the summer, I wanted to let you know that there are a number of summer internships and educational programs in addiction medicine that are available to medical students:

The Betty Ford Center - The Betty Ford Center, in Rancho Mirage, California, runs a Summer Institute for students with a five-day training session on chemical dependency and recovery. Scholarships are available.  For applications, due April 1, and information, see and click on “professional education” or contact the Training Department at 760-773-4108 or

New England School of Addiction Studies - The 31st Annual Summer School will be held on the campus of Eastern Connecticut State College in Willimantic, CT, June 11-17, 2000.  For more information, see or contact the New England Institute of Addiction Studies at or 207-621-2549. Scholarships may be available.

Rutgers Summer Schools in Alcohol and Drug Studies - Rutgers University’s Center for Alcohol Studies in New Brunswick, New Jersey offers two six-day summer seminars in addiction studies on topics such as: relapse prevention, HIV/AIDS, harm reduction, college based strategies, and gender/ethnic issues. For more information, see or call  732-445-4317. Some scholarships to cover tuition may be available.

Summer Clinical Institute in Addiction Studies - The University of California, San Diego, through the Pacific Southwest Addiction Technology Transfer Center, and with grant support from the Scaife Family Foundation, offers a week-long program for medical students, August 7-11, 2000, at the La Jolla campus. For information on the program, see  For applications, contact Kathie Gorham by email or phone 858-551-1326.  Preference is given to those studying or residing in AZ, CA, and NM. Scholarships are available

In order to ensure that you continue to receive future updates, please inform the National Project Office of any changes in your contact information by calling 401-444-1821or emailing  If you have any questions or information useful to other Medical Student Associates, contact the Project Office or email me I encourage you to send messages as often as possible.

Shantanu Agraual
PLNDP Medical Student Associate Coordinator

Current News from the Project Office

Nurco DN, Blatchley RJ, Hanlon TE, O'Grady KE. Early deviance and related risk factors in the children of narcotic addicts. American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse. 25(1):25-45 (1999).

This descriptive study examines the self-reported behaviors of 285 male and female adolescent children (ages 12-17) of narcotic addicts participating in methadone maintenance programs. These children responded to an extensive 2.5-hour interview questionnaire focusing on current and past activities, including criminal activities prior to age 12. The findings revealed that early deviance, assessed by self-report measures of both severity and variety, is related to current adolescent drug and alcohol use, association with deviant peers, a negative view of home atmosphere, and psychological symptomatology. These results are contrasted with the retrospective reports of adolescent behavior obtained from adult male narcotic addicts in a prior study of vulnerability to addiction. The comparability of study results is discussed in the context of developmental risk factors, prevention and treatment strategies, and other considerations specifically related to the development of children of narcotic addicts.

O'Farrell TJ, Van Hutton V, Murphy CM. Domestic violence before and after alcoholism treatment: a two-year longitudinal study. Journal of Studies on Alcohol. 60(3): 317-21 (1999).

An initial study of 88 male alcoholics and their wives had shown that domestic violence decreased significantly in the year following a behavioral marital therapy (BMT) alcoholism treatment program (see J. Cons. Clin. Psychol. 63:

PLNDP Strategic Planning Meeting

On February 17, 2000, a PLNDP Strategic Planning Meeting will be held at the National Project Office to plan activities for the next two years of the PLNDP project. Representatives from primary care and addiction specialty organizations will be present to provide input.  In addition, we’re happy to announce that Michael D. Mendoza will be representing the American Medical Student Association as their liaison to the PLNDP strategic planning committee.  If you have any suggestions for Michael to present, please send them to his attention at

Medical Student Associates Nationwide

Combine efforts with other students in your area.

To find other Medical Student Associates in your area, we invite you to use the Medical Student Associate Directory on the Web.  If you have had problems accessing this directory in the past, please try again; these problems have been corrected. For information on accessing the directory or if you have any difficulties, please contact the PLNDP program office by email at or phone 401-444-1821.

Encourage your classmates to get involved.

Medical students from anywhere in the United States are welcome to become Medical Student Associates of the PLNDP. In particular, we hope that you will remind other students at your medical school to join in our efforts. Your interested colleagues can sign up via the web:, by emailing, or by calling 401-444-1821.

Educational Resources Available

We’d like to remind you of some of the educational resources available to you as a Medical Student Associate of the PLNDP.  Two videotape reports, Drug Addiction: The Promise of Treatment and Trial, Treatment, and Transformation, are available for your use.  These tapes can be used to educate yourself, to raise awareness about drug addiction and treatment issues, or to initiate discussion.  For a complimentary copy of either video, please complete the form on our webpage

The other available resource is the PLNDP Action Kit, which contains PLNDP research and activities. If you would like to use selected Action Kit slides for a presentation or need a hard copy of the graphics, email or call 401-444-1817

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