Who we are
The Addictive, Compulsive and Impulsive Disorders (ACID) research/clinical group has a variety of treatment services and clinical trial opportunities available in the areas of substance addiction, impulse control, and obsessive compulsive disorder. Through our work, we hope to better understand the biological underpinnings of these common conditions and facilitate better treatments and quality of life for clients and their families. We also strive to advance awareness and decrease stigma of these disorders through public advocacy, presentation, and interaction with federal, industry, foundation, and community sources.
Our central areas of focus are in substance and behavioral addictions, including alcohol, drug, and tobacco dependency, pathological gambling, compulsive shopping, kleptomania (shoplifting), pyromania (fire setting), compulsive sexual addictions, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), skin picking, trichotillomania (hair pulling) and body dysmorphic disorder. Our clinical group offers cognitive behavioral therapy for these disorders to new and existing patients in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience. Group treatment may also be available based upon need and client interest.
Impulse control disorders (ICDs) are often referred to as “behavioral addictions.” The term “behavioral” derives from the fact that patients with ICDs, in general, do not abuse a particular substance but rather engage in damaging behaviors such as gambling, shopping, shoplifting, fire setting, excessive grooming, etc. Akin to those with substance addictions, individuals with ICDs often report urges to engage in a behavior that gives them short-term pleasure or excitement. A goal of our research is to identify pharmacological and psychotherapeutic means of dampening these urges (cravings) that seem to lead to behavioral control.
We conduct research to elucidate pathophysiological links to addictions, ICDs, and OCD, and conduct clinical trials to develop improved treatments for our patients.
Jon E. Grant
Director, ACID Clinic
Jon Grant, M.D., J.D., M.P.H., is a Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Chicago and directs the ACID research lab for at the University of Chicago Medical Center in Chicago, IL. Dr. Grant completed an undergraduate degree at the University of Michigan, a master's degree at the University of Chicago, a law degree from Cornell University, a medical degree from Brown University, and a masters degree in public health from Harvard University. Dr. Grant is a board-certified psychiatrist.
Dr. Grant has written over 300 peer-reviewed articles and book
chapters on the phenomenology and pharmacological management of substance use disorders and impulse control disorders, particularly pathological gambling, kleptomania, and grooming disorders. He is the author of "Stop Me Because I Can't Stop Myself," a book on impulse control disorders published by McGraw-Hill (2002) (co-authored with Dr. Suck Won Kim), and is the co-editor (along with Marc Potenza) of two books published by the American Psychiatric Association Pathological Gambling: "A Clinical Guide to Treatment" (2004) and "A Textbook of Men's Mental Health." He also lead-authored a book on the treatment of impulse control disorders using evidence-based cognitive behavior therapy (with Brian Odlaug and Chris Donahue). Dr. Grant's research is funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health.
Associated Clinican, ACID clinic
Andrea King, Ph.D., is a Professor of Psychiatry & Behavioral Neuroscience. She received her doctoral degree from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and completed her internship at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. King’s primary goal is to examine the mechanisms of vulnerability to substance use disorders and to identify efficacious behavioral and pharmacological interventions for treatment of addiction. The main focus of her research has concentrated on the etiology and treatment of alcohol and nicotine dependencies. Dr. King’s work in the Clinical Addictions Research Lab has particularly focused on individual differences among drug users and what factors contribute to developing chronic, maladaptive use of various drugs of abuse. She also focuses on improving clinical methodology for traditionally underserved minority groups. Her work has earned numerous institutional awards at both the University of Chicago and University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. Additionally, students and post-doctoral mentees in her lab have won national awards from the Research Society on Alcoholism.
Associated Clinican, ACID clinic
Shona Vas, PhD, is an Assistant Professor, Director of the Cognitive-Behavior Therapy Program, and Associate Director of Psychology Training at the University of Chicago. Her clinical and research interests include OCD, CBT, anxiety and mood disorders, couples therapy, women's health, and cultural competence.
Associated Clinican, ACID clinic
Lindsay Brauer, PhD, specializes in cognitive-behavioral therapy for adults with mood, anxiety and psychotic disorders, including: major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, specific phobias, schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, and delusional disorder. Dr. Brauer's research examines cognitive, affective, and motivational factors associated with mood and anxiety disorders. Most recently, her researched explored the impact of major depressive episodes on goal generation, goal pursuit motivation, and goal attainment in women. A dedicated educator, Dr. Brauer plays an active role in the pre-doctoral internship program.
Peter Warnke, MD, has performed more than 3,000 stereotactic surgeries and more than 1,000 brain tumor surgeries. Dr. Warnke routinely performs neurosurgical procedures with proven expertise, including: brain tumor surgery, epilepsy surgery, deep brain stimulation, endoscopic neurosurgery, stereotactic radiosurger, motor cortex stimulation, radiofrequency lesioning, and laser ablation. He has collaborated with the ACID program particularly in the area of obsessive compulsive disorder, and has performed several neurosurgical procedures for the treatment of OCD.
Sarah Redden, BA, is a research coordinator at the ACID research program at the University of Chicago. She graduated from the University of Michigan with a BA in Psychology and Spanish. She has previously worked as a research assistant for labs studying anxiety, depression, and social media. She is working on impulse control and addiction research at the University of Chicago in the Department of Psychiatry.
Stephanie Valle, BA, is a research coordinator at the ACID research program at the University of Chicago. She graduated from Carleton College with a BA in Psychology. She has previously worked as an intern at the ACID lab. She is working on impulse control and addiction research at the University of Chicago in the Department of Psychiatry.
Daniel Fridberg, Ph.D. is a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience. He completed a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Indiana University and a predoctoral clinical internship at the VA Connecticut Healthcare System in West Haven, CT. Dr. Fridberg has provided individual and group psychotherapy to persons with addictions, and is well-versed in cognitive-behavioral, motivational enhancement, relapse prevention, and coping skills approaches. He also provides cognitive-behavioral therapy to patients with mood and anxiety disorders, and provides consultation to the University of Chicago liver transplant team. Dr. Fridberg’s research focuses on mechanisms of addiction and novel treatments for addictive disorders.
University of Cambridge
Sam Chamberlain, MB/BChir PhD, is a psychiatric physician based at the Department of Psychiatry, University of Cambridge UK and at Fulbourn Hospital, Cambridge UK. Dr. Chamberlain is an expert in neurocognitive testing and collaborates with the ACID group on various clinical trials and presentations.
University of São Paulo
Gustavo Costa Medeiros
Gustavo Costa Medeiros originally became involved with the lab as a collaboration with the University of São Paulo where he was practicing psychiatrist. He is currently collaborating with the ACID lab on a number of projects, including an international comparison of patients with OCD, while studying for his board exams to enroll in a residency in the United States.