ACMT ToxIC Registry To Receive NIH Funding to Investigate Drug Abuse and Overdose

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The American College of Medical Toxicology is to receive two subcontracts from the National Institutes of Health to perform research on drugs of abuse and poisoning, utilizing its toxicology patient registry.

American College of Medical Toxicology

These two new awards will help deepen our understanding of complications of drug overdose and provide for an early warning system to detect previously unrecognized drugs.

The American College of Medical Toxicology (ACMT) will receive two subcontracts from the NIH’s National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA) to support research studies utilizing the Toxicology Investigators Consortium (ToxIC) Patient Registry. ToxIC is ACMT’s multicenter, multinational network of physician medical toxicologists, currently with 70 hospitals, who provide bedside evaluation of patients experiencing adverse effects related to drugs, chemicals, and environmental toxins.

One award will support an investigation entitled “Prevention of the cardiovascular medical consequences of drug overdose.” The Principal Investigator for the project is Alex Manini, MD, MS, FACMT, from the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, NY. This grant is a five-year, $3.4M R01 from NIH/NIDA intended to validate risk factors for cardiovascular events following drug overdose. The overall goal is to produce a useful risk score to apply to patients with undifferentiated acute drug overdoses presenting to the emergency department.

The second is a 1-year $300,000 award entitled “NIDA national early warning system network (iN3): An innovative approach”. This study relies upon the ToxIC multicenter network as sentinel sites to identify new and emerging drugs of abuse and their medical complications. Led by Edward Boyer, MD, PhD from the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine in Worcester, MA and Robert Carlson, PhD from Wright State University in Dayton, OH, this project will obtain preliminary data, at the request of NIH, to support a larger research award to be submitted in November, 2014.

The ToxIC Patient Registry was founded in 2010 by ACMT members Jeffrey Brent, MD, PhD and Paul Wax, MD. Over 33,000 patients from 25 states have been entered into the registry since its inception. Suzanne White, MD, President of the ACMT, says “These two new awards will help deepen our understanding of complications of drug overdose and provide for an early warning system to detect previously unrecognized drugs. Doctors from around the country will be able to collectively play an important role in these research efforts.“

“Since death from overdose with prescription medications now exceeds motor vehicle crashes as the primary cause of unintentional death in the US, research into prevention and early recognition of drug abuse is incredibly important” said Paul Wax, MD, Executive Director of ACMT. He further confirmed that “emerging drugs of abuse skirt regulation initially and are frequently marketed as ‘safe and legal’ but often carry significant medical complications.” ACMT has been an active participant in research and policy development aimed at treating individual patients while striving to improve the public health.

About The American College of Medical Toxicology
ACMT is a professional, non-profit association of physicians with recognized expertise in medical toxicology. The ACMT mission is to advance quality care of poisoned patients and public health through physicians who specialize in consultative, emergency, environmental, forensic, and occupational toxicology. For more information, visit http://www.acmt.net, or follow on Twitter @acmt.

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