The 35th International Symposium of the Groupe de recherche sur le système nerveux central (GRSNC), entitled "Drugs of abuses and psychiatric diseases: Neurobiological and clinical aspects", will be held on May 6-7, 2013 at Université de Montréal. It is organized by Dr. Louis-Éric Trudeau, Dr. Daniel Lévesque, Dr. Pierre-Paul Rompré, Dr. Anne-Noël Samaha et Dr. Emmanuel Stip (Université de Montréal).
Individuals suffering from psychiatric disorders such as depression or schizophrenia are particularly vulnerable to drug abuse and addiction. This state, where a psychiatric disorder coexists with pathological drug seeking and taking behaviour is known as comorbidity. Comorbidity has major health implications. Patients with such a dual diagnosis suffer more and represent an important therapeutic challenge. At this international symposium, held in Montréal, several hypotheses will be discussed. Notably, speakers will debate on the self-medication hypothesis, which suggests that individuals with certain psychiatric diseases abuse drugs to attenuate symptoms of their illness or medication side effects. Other speakers will discuss the possibility that psychiatric disorders and drug addiction are the fruit of a common biological predisposition. The causes of comorbidity are highly complex and controversial: Can drug abuse contribute to the emergence of psychiatric symptoms? Can certain psychiatric medications promote drug taking? What is the addictive potential of certain psychostimulant drugs used in the treatment of attention and hyperactivity disorders? This symposium will bring together basic scientists and clinicians to form an international program covering these issues. The speakers are leading experts in clinical and basic research on issues of comorbidity, and these experts will present the most up to date findings on the links between psychiatric disease and drug addiction. Our hope is that this scientific exchange will educate a broad audience on the dual diagnosis issue and lead to recommendations for new research.
Abstract submission deadline: Sunday, 31 March 2013