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The University of Michigan issued the following news release:

DATE: Symposium, 2-5:30 p.m. Oct. 16, 2008.

Panel discussion, 9 a.m.-noon Oct. 17.

EVENT: A two-day interdisciplinary program will explore the intersections of sex, gender and drug abuse. Distinguished speakers representing the social and biological sciences will discuss their current research at the Oct. 16 symposium. Carol Boyd, director of Institute for Research on Women and Gender and professor of Nursing and Women's Studies, will moderate the Oct. 17 panel discussion.

The program is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Registration is encouraged. The speakers are:

* Jill Becker, U-M Department of Psychology. Becker's research examines the relationship between sex differences in the brain and sex differences in drug addiction. Her research uses preclinical models to investigate the neural mechanisms mediating sex differences in vulnerability for cocaine abuse.

* Rajita Sinha, Yale University, Department of Psychiatry. Sinha's research uses human laboratory and imaging technology to examine the gender-specific clinical neurobiology of emotional stress, desire and drug craving and its effects on lapse and relapse to consummatory behaviors, such as, drinking, eating and drug use. She is also interested in developing treatments to target stress related relapse in addictive disorders. She will be speaking specifically about stress and gender effects as relates to drug seeking behavior.

* Tonda Hughes, University of Illinois at Chicago, College of Nursing. Hughes is a nationally recognized expert in the area of alcohol use among lesbians and her NIH-funded study "Sexual Identity and Drinking: A Longitudinal Follow-up" is one of the very few longitudinal studies of lesbian health. Her presentation will address recent advances and remaining gaps in research on alcohol, women and sexual minority status.

* Sharon Wilsnack, University of North Dakota, Department of Clinical Neuroscience. Wilsnack is an internationally recognized expert on women and substance abuse. She will discuss findings from her 20-year longitudinal study of drinking behavior in U.S. women.

* Wendy Bostwick, the Adler School of Professional Psychology, will participate as an additional discussant at the panel discussion. Her research explores gender, sexual identity, substance abuse and mental health.

CONTACT: U-M Substance Abuse Research Center, (734) 998-6500. E-mail [email protected] for more information; registration is recommended.

PLACE: U-M Alumni Center, Founders Room, 200 Fletcher Street. Central Campus map:

SPONSORS: University of Michigan Substance Abuse Research Center and Institute for Research on Women and GenderContact: Jared Wadley, 734/936-7819.

Jared Wadley, 734/936-7819.