Special Populations and Topics Projects (2010-2012)


Brief Intervention for Alcohol Misuse Among Elderly Latino Day Laborers

Lara Ray, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (lararay@psych.ucla.edu)
Mitchell Karno, Ph.D. (karno@ucla.edu), &
Alison Moore, M.D., M.P.H. (aamoore@mednet.ucla.edu), Co-Investigators

This pilot study developed a screening and brief intervention strategy designed to reduce risky alcohol use among Latino day laborers. Study staff met with day laborers to assess their current level of alcohol use and psychosocial functioning and conducted focus groups to determine participants’ needs for healthcare services.

Brief Intervention for Alcohol Misuse Among Elderly Latino Day Laborers was funded by the National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Aging, grant P30 AG021684, from July 2010 to June 2011.

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Development of Childhood Obesity and
High-risk Behavior Engagement in Adolescence

David Huang, Dr.P.H., Principal Investigator (yhuang@ucla.edu)
M. Douglas Anglin, Ph.D., & Kynna Wright-Volel, Ph.D., Co-Investigators
H. Isabella Lanza, Ph.D., Project Director

Childhood obesity and high-risk behaviors in adolescence (e.g., illicit drug use and delinquency) are major social issues facing the nation.  Childhood obesity is associated with many and various adverse health and psychological consequences (e.g., asthma and low self-esteem).  Developmental trajectories of childhood obesity and their relationship to the incidence of both concurrent and subsequent problem behaviors, especially in adolescence, have not yet been well established, in large part because prospective longitudinal studies are rarely available.  Yet systematic examination of developmental patterns of obesity in children and a better understanding of the relationship of such patterns to problem behaviors have important implications for improving youth intervention programs for a variety of problematic behaviors.  This research project aimed to increase knowledge of the developmental trajectories of obesity and examine relations between childhood obesity and risk behaviors in late adolescence/young adulthood. Using the child sample initially identified in the 1979 National Longitudinal Study of Youth (NLSY79), we focused on the following research questions: (1) What are the developmental trajectories of obesity from childhood to adolescence (6 to 18 years); (2) are certain obesity trajectories associated with the development and maintenance of risk behaviors in adolescence/young adulthood; (3) which characteristics and health-risk behaviors of mothers are associated with higher risk of childhood obesity; and (4) are there gender and ethnic differences in development of obesity and associations with risk behaviors?

Development of Childhood Obesity and High-risk Behavior Engagement in Adolescence was funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, grant 1 R03 HD064619, from December 2010 to November 2012.

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Drum-Assisted Recovery Therapy for Native Americans

Daniel Dickerson, D.O, M.P.H., Principal Investigator (daniel.dickerson@ucla.edu)
Yih-Ihg Hser, Ph.D., Co-Investigator
Cheryl Teruya, Ph.D., Project Director

American Indians/Alaska Natives have the highest rates of alcohol and drug use disorders compared to other racial/ethnic groups in the United States. However, very few culturally tailored substance abuse treatment strategies have been empirically tested. Drumming is recognized as a viable healing tool for American Indians/Alaska Natives. Evidence suggests that drumming enhances substance abuse recovery as revealed in studies on physical and psychological effects.  Drum-Assisted Recovery Therapy for Native Americans (DARTNA) is a culturally tailored drum therapy model for American Indians/Alaska Natives with substance abuse disorders. The purpose of this grant is to develop this treatment protocol and to develop strategies to conduct a follow-up clinical trial. To meet these goals, the primary goals of this research project are to (1) develop and pretest a culturally tailored treatment strategy, DARTNA, for American Indians/Alaska Natives with alcohol and drug use disorders, and (2) obtain community-based input to assist in a follow-up clinical trial. Our findings will assist us in gathering data needed to develop a follow-up study to formally test the efficacy of DARTNA among American Indians/Alaska Natives with alcohol and drug use disorders.

Drum-Assisted Recovery Therapy for Native Americans was funded by the National Center for Alternative and Complementary Medicine, grant 1 R21 AT005360, from September 2010 to August 2013.

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Enhancing Follow-Up Rates Through a
Rechargeable Incentive Card (RIC) System

David Farabee, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (dfarabee@ucla.edu)
Stacy Calhoun, M.A., Project Director

The purpose of this Phase I Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) proposal was to develop a national network that supports a rechargeable incentive card (RIC) system designed to enhance follow-up rates. Specifically, the RIC System involves a debit card linked to an account in which researchers can immediately transfer funds following a follow-up contact (whether this involves telephone or in-person interviews, mail-in surveys, or provision of biological samples). The card also contains a toll-free number that subjects can use to call (as often as once a month) to notify the researchers of changes in their locator/contact information. This, too, can result in an automatic transfer of funds to the subjects’ RIC System account. Developing this technology will require collaboration between the Calance Corporation and the UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs (ISAP). Phase II (scale up and commercialization) began in the spring of 2012.

Enhancing Follow-Up Rates Through a Rechargeable Incentive Card (RIC) System was funded by the Calance Corporation, NIDA grant 1R41DA025387,from December 2008 to July 2010.

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Inside Prescription Drug Abuse –
A Web-based Multimedia Resource for
Prescription Opiate Treatment

Larissa Mooney, M.D., Co-Investigator, UCLA Site Principal Investigator (lmooney@ucla.edu)
Sponsor:  Emily Meyers, Eyes of the World Media Group, Inc.

This Phase I Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) project aims to develop a Web-based intervention tool to augment treatment for prescription opioid dependence.  Feasibility, perceived value, and changes in knowledge acquisition will be assessed.

Inside Prescription Drug Abuse – A Web-based Multimedia Resource for Prescription Opiate Treatment was funded by a National Institute on Drug Abuse grant (1 R43 DA030879) to UCLA ISAP as a subcontractor and Eyes of the World Media Group as the sponsor, from July 2011 to June 2012.

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Mobile Continuing Care Approach for Youth

Rachel Gonzales, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (rachelmg@ucla.edu)
Alison Moffitt, B.A., Project Director (amoffit@apu.du)

The project has two studies. Study 1 was formative research used for the development of a mobile-based text messaging continuing-care Intervention to support youth recovery. Study 2 is a pilot randomized controlled trial of the 12-week mobile-based intervention currently being implemented with youth transitioning out of substance abuse treatment programs.

Mobile Continuing Care Approach for Youth was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, grant 1 K01 DA027754, from July 2010 to July 2011.

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Modeling Risk and Protective Factors for Well-being of Maltreated Youth

Elizabeth Hall, Ph.D., Principal Investigator (ehall@ucla.edu)
Christine Grella, Ph.D., Co-Investigator (Grella@ucla.edu)
Libo Li, Ph.D., Co-Investigator (lilibo@ucla.edu)

We conducted a secondary analysis study to identify risk and protective factor trajectories for maltreated youth during the transition from middle childhood to early adolescence and how these trajectories influenced their well-being. The study used data from the National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW), the first national probability survey of children assessed following a child maltreatment report. This study targeted the transition from middle childhood to early adolescence because it is a significant period during which many life patterns are established. By identifying risk and protective factor trajectories for this population and understanding how these trajectories influence outcome, the proposed study enables policymakers to more effectively choose and time intervention services to improve child outcomes. Because a large proportion of Child Welfare System (CWS) cases were linked to parental substance abuse which, in turn, is associated with higher risk of poor child outcomes, we examined this factor in detail. This study made an important contribution to the substance abuse and child welfare research knowledge base because there is a lack of research on trajectories of risk and protective factors during the transition to adolescence that includes the range of risk and protective factors available in the NSCAW dataset.

Modeling Risk and Protective Factors for the Well-being of Maltreated Youth was funded by the National Institute of Child Health & Human Development, grant 1 R03 HD058235, from January 2009 to December 2010. No cost extension to December 2011.

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Prenatal Methamphetamine Exposure
and School Age Outcome

Barry Lester, M.D., Brown University, Principal Investigator
Richard A. Rawson, Ph.D., Co-Investigator (rrawson@mednet.ucla.edu)
Dave Bennett, Project Director

The rapidly escalating abuse of methamphetamine (METH) in the United States, places a sense of urgency on understanding the consequences of METH use during pregnancy for the developing child. To our knowledge, the IDEAL (Infant Development Environment and Lifestyle) study is the only prospective longitudinal NIH study of prenatal METH exposure and child outcomes. This is the continuation of a multi-site, longitudinal study that includes four diverse data collection sites where METH use is prevalent (Iowa, Oklahoma, California, and Hawaii) and three data coordinating centers (Brown Center for the Study of Children at Risk, the Data Management Center at UCLA ISAP, and the Center for Substance Abuse Research (CESAR) at the University of Maryland.  The responsibilities of the three data coordinating centers included study development and oversight, data management, communication and documentation. The children were enrolled at birth and assessed at multiple age points until 36 months old during Phase I of this study (IDEAL I). The cohort was then followed during Phase II, which spanned the age range from 5 years through 7.5 years old (IDEAL II).  We followed 204 METH-exposed and 208 comparison children since birth. We studied a relatively narrow band of executive function domain outcomes supported by the published preclinical and clinical literature and our own preliminary findings. We also studied how these executive function domains affected school-related academic skills. In addition, we examined the effects of prenatal METH exposure on emerging executive function domains including higher order motivation, attention, memory, inhibitory control, visual motor integration, and motor control, and how the effects of prenatal METH exposure are affected by psychosocial risk factors and by postnatal passive drug exposure (e.g., smoke).

Publications from this study include:

LaGasse LL, Wouldes T, Newman E, Smith LM, Shah R, Derauf C, Huestis MA, Arria AM, DellaGrotta S, Wilcox T, & Lester BM. (2011). Prenatal methamphetamine exposure and neonatal neurobehavioral outcome in the USA and New Zealand. Neurotoxicology and Teratology, 33; 166-175. PMCID: PMC2974956.

LaGasse LL,  Derauf C, Smith LM, Newman E, Shah R, Neal C, Arria AM, Huestis MA, DellaGrotta S, Hai, L, Dansereau LM, & Lester BM. (2012) Prenatal methamphetamine exposure and childhood behavior problems at ages 3 and 5. Pediatrics. Epub ahead of Print March 19, 2012. PMID:22430455.

Derauf C, MD , LaGasse LL, Smith LM, Newman E, Rizwan Shah, Neal C , Arria AM, Huestis MA, Della Grotta S, Lynne M. Dansereau LM, Lin H, & Lester, BM. (2012). Prenatal methamphetamine exposure and inhibitory control among young school-age children. The Journal of Pediatrics. Epub ahead of print March 15, 2012. PMID: 22424953.

Derauf C, LaGasse LL, Smith LM, Newman E, Shah R, Arria AM, Huestis MA, Haning W, Strauss A, DellaGrotta S, Dansereau L, Lin H, & Lester BM. (2011). Infant temperament and high risk environment relate to behavior problems and language in toddlers. Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, 31(1).  PMCID: PMC3095893.

Shah R, Copes, SD, LaGasse LL, Derauf C, Newman E, Arria AM, Huestis MA, Haning W, Smith LM, Strauss A, DellaGrotta S, Dansereau L, Roberts M, & Lester BM. (in press). Prenatal methamphetamine exposure and short-term maternal and infant medical outcomes. American Journal of Perinatology.

Zabaneh R, Smith LM, LaGasse LL, Derauf C, Newman E, Shah R, Haning W, Arria AM, Huestis MA, Strauss A, DellaGrotta S, Dansereau L, Lin H, and Lester BM.  The effects of prenatal cethamphetamine exposure on childhood growth patterns from birth to three years of age.  American Journal of Perinatology. [Epub ahead of print]. PMID:21818727.

Smith LM, Paz MS, LaGasse LL, Derauf C, Grant P,  Shah R, Arria AM, Huestis MA, Haning, W, Strauss A, DellaGrotta S, Dansereau L & Lester BM. (in press). Prenatal exposure to methamphetamine and maternal depression: Neurodevelopmental findings from the infant development, environment, and lifestyle (IDEAL) study. Depression and Anxiety Journal

Liles B, Newman E, LaGasse LL, Derauf C, Shah R, Smith LM, Arria AM, Huestis MA, Haning W, Strauss A, Della Grotta S, Dansereau LM, Neal C, & Lester BM. (in press). Parenting stress among prenatal methamphetamine users: The moderating role of maternal depressive symptoms. Child Psychiatry and Human Development.

Prenatal Methamphetamine Exposure and School Age Outcome was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse to Women & Infants Hospital with collaboration by UCLA ISAP, from September 2007 through May 2012.

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Reducing Unhealthy Alcohol Use in Older Hispanic Laborers

Alison Moore, M.D., M.P.H. Principal Investigator (aamoore@mednet.ucla.edu)
Mitchell Karno, Ph.D. (karno@ucla.edu) & Lara Ray, Ph.D. (lararay@psych.ucla.edu), Co-Investigators
Karina Ramirez, Project Director

This study combines two evidence-based behavioral therapies, Motivational Enhancement Therapy (MET) and Strengths Based Case Management (SBCM) to improve treatment engagement and retention and to reduce unhealthy drinking in primarily Spanish-speaking, socially disadvantaged Hispanic men.  Both of these approaches are non-confrontational and aim to engage the client in the change process and to improve self-efficacy; MET addresses internal factors and SBCM addresses external factors affecting behavior change.  Integrating these behavioral interventions and delivering them via community health promoters (promotoras) in the community rather than in health care settings should increase the likelihood of success in improving treatment engagement and retention and reducing alcohol use in this population. 

Reducing Unhealthy Alcohol Use in Older Hispanic Laborers was funded by the National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, grant 1 R21 AA019738, from May 2011 to April 2013.

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Women, Methamphetamine, and Sex

Alison Hamilton, Ph.D., M.P.H. Principal Investigator (alisonh@ucla.edu)

This 5-year project focused on the relationship between methamphetamine (MA) and sex among women MA users. Thirty women in residential treatment participated in in-depth interviews. They were asked about their history of using MA and other substances, their life experiences (including any trauma or abuse they may have experienced), and their perspectives on how MA has affected their lives, specifically their intimate relationships and sexual behaviors. In the follow-up phase, these participants were interviewed about their experiences since the first interview. Recovery, relapse, intimate relationships, and several other topics were explored. As a career development award, the project also involved training for the principal investigator (PI) in public health and community health sciences. This study adds to the body of literature on the impact of substance abuse on life experiences. Considering that women who abuse substances such as MA typically have multiple factors placing them at risk for poor sexual decision-making (e.g., histories of violence and abuse), a more in-depth understanding of how women MA users conceptualize their sexual behaviors and experiences could assist in developing interventions for them. The PI’s co-mentors on the project were Drs. Richard Rawson (UCLA ISAP), Yih-Ing Hser (UCLA ISAP), and Vivian Brown (PROTOTYPES).

Related Publications:

Hamilton, A., Goeders, N. (2010). Violence perpetrated by women who use methampethamine. Journal of Substance Use, 15 (5), 313–329.

Hamilton, A. (In press). The vital conjuncture of methamphetamine-involved pregnancy: Objective risks and subjective realities. In Responsible Reproduction? Social and Biomedical Constructions of Reproductive Risk, Lauren Fordyce & Aminata Maraesa, Editors. Vanderbilt University Press.

Women, Methamphetamine and Sex was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, grant 1 K01 DA017647, from April 2006 through March 2011.

Last Updated:  12/04/2012

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2016 ISAP Publications
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