NIH Posts Funding Notice

Substance Use Disorders (SUD) continue to have a substantial adverse impact in the U.S resulting in costs of more than $700 billion annually due to healthcare expenditures, lost earnings, and expenses associated with crime and accidents.

There are effective pharmacological and behavioral treatments but the long term success rate is low and not all individuals are responsive. Also, the approved treatments are not available for cannabis, methamphetamine, and cocaine use disorders. The development of safe and effective therapeutic devices for SUDs represents an opportunity to address the public health need for new SUD interventions.

Continuing advances in technologies offer unprecedented opportunities to develop neuromodulators or neurophysiological devices that are safe and effective to treat SUDs. The objective is to move these devices to their next step in the FDA approval process in order to generate new FDA approved device-based treatments for SUDs.

With the approval of neuromodulator devices to treat mental health disorders such as depression and obsessive compulsive disorders, interest has rapidly grown around applying these and related technologies to SUDs.

Studies examining the effects of neuromodulation on nicotine, alcohol, cocaine, and other SUDs have reported some therapeutic effects. However, further work is needed to strengthen and build upon these results.

NIH on December 15, 2017 posted the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) “Device-Based Treatments for Substance Use Disorders” (SUD) (PAR-18-494). The purpose for this FOA is to accelerate the development of devices to treat SUDs.

The number of awards and funds available is contingent upon NIH appropriations and the submission of a sufficient number of meritorious applications. Eligible organizations include high education institutions, nonprofits, for-profits, small businesses, governments, and other community organizations.

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