Negative Reinforcement Mechanisms In Drug Addiction
“Negative reinforcement mechanisms in drug addiction”
George Koob, Ph.D.
Director, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Athina Markou Memorial Symposium
Thursday, November 10, 2016
Atkinson Hall, UC San Diego
On behalf of the UCSD Department of Psychiatry, we welcome you to the Athina Markou Memorial Symposium. Professor Markou was a uniquely gifted scientist, caring mentor, dedicated Greek, fearless adventurer, and loving friend and partner. Born in Greece, Athina came to the U.S. for graduate training, first in Cincinnati and then UCSD. At The Scripps Research Institute and then UCSD, Dr. Markou established a world-class laboratory focusing on the neurobiology of reward and motivational processes relevant to psychiatric disorders. She trained exceptional scientists, mentoring 70+ young investigators, many becoming leaders in the field. As Vice Chair for Basic Science Research in Psychiatry, she was a vibrant leader who fostered the recruitment of new basic sciences faculty, helped organize our Research Council, and established a very successful research colloquium series.
Dr. Markou sought to develop new therapeutics for addiction and mood disorders. She designed ways to quantitatively measure reward and motivational processes characterizing psychostimulant dependence in rodents, providing the field with important tools. Her pioneering work on metabotropic glutamate receptors led to clinical trials of mGlu2 positive allosteric modulators in tobacco dependence. She also led a multidisciplinary team to develop GABA-B receptor modulators for treating nicotine dependence.
Dr. Markou’s pioneering work was recognized by the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology, via the Daniel H. Efron Research Award. Dr. Markou authored 200+ articles and reviews, which are widely cited in the literature. She was a tireless contributor to the field as editor for top psychopharmacology journals, receiving multiple awards for her dedication to the peer-review process. She took special pride in her work with the Greek Neuroscience community, and was featured by Deree College in Athens, her undergraduate alma mater, as a “success story” in Greek newspapers.