The Brown University News Bureau
Distributed November 25, 1998
Contact: Kristen Lans
Mental health presentations are open to the public
Research symposium on weight loss, alcoholism, obsessive compulsives
Brown University's Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior will hold its
third annual research symposium Dec. 1 from 1-5:15 p.m. at Butler Hospital. The
half-hour presentations are free and open to the public.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Weight loss, alcoholism and childhood obsessive
compulsive disorder are topics that will be discussed by Brown University
School of Medicine faculty on Dec. 1 from 1-5:15 p.m. at Butler Hospital's Ray
Conference Center, 345 Blackstone Blvd. This third annual research symposium is
sponsored by Brown University's Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior. It
is free and open to the public.
At 2 p.m., Enoch Gordis, M.D., director of the National Institute on Alcohol
Abuse and Alcoholism, will deliver the keynote address about advances in
research on alcoholism. The institute is the principal federal agency for
research on the causes, consequences, treatment and prevention of
Faculty presenters and their topics include Henrietta Leonard, M.D., who
will discuss a factor that may trigger childhood obsessive compulsive disorder;
Rena Wing, Ph.D., who will discuss effective ways to maintain weight loss; and
Richard Longabaugh, Ed.D., who will talk about the role of social support in
treating alcoholism. Additional research by faculty, residents, interns and
postdoctoral fellows will be showcased on posters.
The presentation schedule
- 1 p.m. Opening remarks by Martin B. Keller, M.D., chairman of the
Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, and Donald Marsh, M.D., dean of
medicine and biological sciences.
- 1:20 p.m. "Childhood Onset Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: Is
There a Unique Subtype?" Henrietta L. Leonard, director of training, child and
adolescent psychiatry and professor of psychiatry and human behavior, will talk
about her findings that a streptococcal infection may trigger obsessive
compulsive disorder and Tourette Syndrome in some children. She is co-author of
the recently published book Is It "Just a Phase"? How to Tell Common Childhood
Phases from More Serious Problems.
- 2 p.m. "Advances in Research on Alcoholism and What They Promise for Future
Treatment and Prevention," the keynote address by Enoch Gordis, director of the
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. The institute supports
studies on alcohol-related problems in such biological and behavioral areas as
neuroscience, pharmacology, epidemiology, genetics, molecular biology, and
prevention and treatment.
- 3:20 p.m. "Behavioral Strategies to Improve Long-Term Weight Loss
and Maintenance." The biggest hurdle for those who are overweight is not losing
the weight but keeping if off, says Rena R. Wing, director of the diabetes and
obesity research division of behavioral and preventive medicine and professor
of psychiatry and human behavior. She will talk about ways people have
maintained their weight loss, drawing on information from the National Weight
Control Registry of 2,000 individuals who have lost upward of 30 pounds and
kept the weight off at least a year.
- 4 p.m. "Matching Alcohol Treatment to Patient Social Support and the
Effects of Participation in Alcoholics Anonymous." We currently have little
idea why a treatment for alcohol dependence works when it works, says Richard
Longabaugh, associate director of the Center for Alcohol and Addiction Studies
and professor of psychiatry and human behavior. Longabaugh will talk about the
role of social support on the effectiveness of treatment programs such as
- 4:40 p.m. Presentation of awards for research posters