2020/2022 Alcohol and the Nervous System Gordon Research Conference & Gordon Research Seminar
Project Summary/Abstract This R13 application requests support for the Gordon Research Conference (GRC) and associated GRS on Alcohol and the Nervous System that will take place in March 2020 and 2022 at the historic Hotel Galvez in Galveston, TX. The inaugural GRC on this topic took place in 2014 and was considered a tremendous success by all attendees. This application seeks to build on the success of the first three meetings by bringing together young and established alcohol researchers, as well as preeminent scientists from related fields, to discuss the latest groundbreaking developments in neuroscience research on alcohol-related health issues. The central goal will be to foster deep and open discussion of research developments, build new scientific collaborations, and propel the next generation of scientific advances in alcohol neuroscience research. The following four specific aims will ensure that we accomplish this goal: 1) To provide an international forum that promotes open discussion of cutting-edge research at the forefront of alcohol effects on the nervous system and related neuroscience areas. 2) To introduce breakthrough neuroscience techniques that facilitate the understanding of brain mechanisms driving alcohol drinking and abuse, as well as mechanisms involved in fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. 3) To promote interaction between young and senior investigators and the exchange of ideas that will shape the future directions of the alcohol neuroscience community. 4) To foster the development of the next generation of alcohol researchers by encouraging the participation of students and postdoctoral fellows, both in alcohol and related research fields. The Alcohol and the Nervous System GRC will focus on presentations and discussions at the forefront of our field. The scope of the research presented will be restricted to basic and clinical studies involving alcohol and the nervous system as well as groundbreaking new neuroscience techniques that can be brought to bear on the greatest challenges facing our field. Talks will address questions centered on the neural substrates that contribute to alcohol-related health disorders across the entire lifespan. The unique GRC format is ideal for breaking down barriers to progress and includes formal talks interspersed with ample discussion time, poster sessions, and informal discussion periods designed to stimulate communication, planning, and collaboration. To foster the growth of the next generation of alcohol researchers, we will put concerted efforts into encouraging and supporting participation of students, postdoctoral fellows and young investigators, both in the GRC and GRS. Thus, this R13 will foster communication of frontier alcohol research, opportunities for cutting edge scientific collaboration, and entry of new and younger investigators into the alcohol research field. We envision the GRC and associated GRS on Alcohol and the Nervous System will significantly advance our current understanding of the neurobiology of alcohol addiction and stimulate the development of effective therapeutic approaches for the treatment of alcohol use disorders.