Do you currently use heroin, or have you recently used heroin? Are you between the ages of 18-40 years old? If so, you may be able to take part in a research study to help learn more about the role of a protein in people with opioid use disorders. Compensation is provided.
Heroin is a highly addictive opioid drug. Some research suggests that a protein in the brain called SV2A may play an important role in heroin addiction. The purpose of this research study is to learn more about the role of the SVA2 protein in people with opioid use disorders. Researchers hope their findings will lead to a better understanding of brain chemistry in the future.
COULD THIS STUDY BE RIGHT FOR YOU?
- Adults ages 18-40
- Current or recent heroin user
- Willing to not use heroin for several weeks
- Not taking any other medications (birth control is ok)
- Have never been diagnosed with psychosis
- Not currently diagnosed with depression, anxiety, or panic attacks
- Willing and able to undergo MRI/PET/CT scanning (not claustrophobic, no tattoos or piercings above the waist, no non-removable metallic objects in your body)
- Not pregnant or breastfeeding
WHAT PARTICIPANTS CAN EXPECT
During an initial screening, participants will receive a comprehensive psychiatric and physical evaluation, complete questionnaires, and provide urine and blood samples. If eligible after your screening visit, you will have at least three visits that will involve urine drug screens, and MRI/PET/CT scans.
IRB:STUDY19040147B - Imaging Synaptic Vesicle Glycoprotein 2A (SV2A) in Opioid Use Disorders
MEET THE RESEARCHER
Rajesh Narendran, MD, is an Associate Professor of Radiology at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Narendran specializes in using positron emission tomography (PET) radiotracers to understand the neurochemical abnormalities in stress-related and addictive disorders in humans. Aside from his work in research, Dr. Narendran is a fully licensed PA physician and a board-certified psychiatrist who treats drug/alcohol addicted and psychiatric patients at the UPMC WPIC re:solve crisis center.