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Project Title:
CHARTS: Children with Hyperactivity & Autism Research Treatment Study
Principal Investigator:
Benjamin Handen, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Sarah McAuliffe-Bellin, M.Ed., mcausj@upmc.edu; 412-235-5447

What We Are Studying:
The use of atomoxetine (Strattera) and parent training versus placebo for symptoms of ADHD in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
The following individuals may be eligible to participate: Children between 5-14 years of age; Symptoms or diagnosis of Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Disorder or Pervasive Developmental Disorder; Symptoms of over-activity, inattention, impulsivity or diagnosis of ADHD; Children who are not on medication or are on medications that are not working well.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals not meeting the eligibility criteria listed above.
What Participation Involves:
This study involves participation in 10 management sessions at the Merck Outpatient Clinic including initial screening visit. Sessions utilize various assessment tools to track safety and effectiveness of the intervention.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Evaluations, study visits, parent training and medication are provided free of charge. An optional 24-week follow-up will be offered to all participants. Information on stipends can be obtained by contacting the Study Coordinator.


Project Title:
Study of Personality, Emotion & Cognitive Control
Principal Investigator:
Michael Hallquist, PhD
For Information Contact:

Rajpreet Chahal (chahalr@upmc.edu, Phone: 412.383.8176)

What We Are Studying:
We are studying how brain changes in teenagers and young adults are related to the development of emotion regulation and cognitive control.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Does your teen tend to experience intense emotions that change quickly? Are your teen’s relationships with others intense or stormy? Does your teen tend to say or do things without thinking? We are currently recruiting participants 13–22 years of age to participate in a study involving 6 visits over the span of a year. This study includes an fMRI scan.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals with a history of psychotic disorder, Bipolar I disorder (or a family history of Bipolar I disorder), autism spectrum disorder, reactive attachment disorder, pervasive developmental disorder, pervasive development disorder, motor disorder, head injury, mental retardation, neurological disorder or current substance abuse are not eligible for this study. Individuals with non-removable metal on or inside the body, those who are claustrophobic, pregnant or currently taking medications that affect blood flow responses are also not eligible to participate.
What Participation Involves:
This investigation involves six office visits in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh over the course of one year. These visits would involve filling out questionnaires and assessments about you. In addition, participants would complete an MRI scan. Finally, you would return for two follow-up visits after 6 and 12 months to complete questionnaires and assessments.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants will be compensated up to $350 for completing all six visits of the study.


Project Title:
The Couples Study
Principal Investigator:
Paul Pilkonis, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Kristen Cushman, cushmank@upmc.edu 412-246-6517

What We Are Studying:
We are interested in the associations between personality traits, emotions, and how individuals interact with people close to them. We are also interested in the experience of being in a relationship with someone receiving mental health care.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Couples who are currently involved in a romantic relationship for at least a month may be eligible. One person in the couple must be currently receiving mental health treatment and be between the ages of 18 and 40 years old.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals who are not currently in a romantic relationship, individuals who are not in the age range, and individuals with traumatic brain injuries, strokes, or other major problems of the central nervous system.
What Participation Involves:
Both members of the couple participate, but the information they provide is not shared between them. Participants will complete a series of questionnaires and interviews asking about their past and current mental health treatment; the nature and quality of their relationships with their romantic partner, family, and friends; and how they react in certain situations. Participants will also be asked to complete a computer task and to tell us about their day-to-day lives using smart phones. One task is completed with both people together – a discussion in our office. Some tasks are repeated at different times over a one-year period.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants will each receive $25 to $50 for every visit, with maximum compensation that could amount to $805 per person over an entire year.


Project Title:
Effects of an Active Medication (Olanzapine) versus an Inactive Medication (Placebo) in the Treatment of Outpatients with Eating Disorders (Anorexia Nervosa)
Principal Investigator:
Marsha Marcus, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Ashley Bright at brightac@upmc.edu or 412-246-5930

What We Are Studying:
We are examining the effectiveness of a research medication (olanzapine) in the outpatient treatment of adults with anorexia nervosa.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Women and men who are 18-65 years of age and have anorexia nervosa are eligible for consideration for the study.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals receiving treatment for alcohol or drug dependence and pregnant women are not eligible for this study. In addition, individuals with anorexia nervosa who are unable to attend treatment in Pittsburgh are ineligible for consideration for the study.
What Participation Involves:
Prospective participants will complete a diagnostic interview, screening questionnaires, and a thorough medical evaluation before being accepted into the study. Individuals who qualify for the study will receive 16 weeks of medication (olanzapine or placebo), as well as medical management and support from a psychiatrist. In addition, enrolled participants will complete research assessments once per month during the intervention and 1 and 2 months after the intervention is completed.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Enrolled participants can earn up to $250 by completing research assessment throughout the treatment, and at 1- and 2-month follow-up appointments. There is no compensation for the screening procedures or for attending treatment.


Project Title:
Psychobiology of Suicidal Behavior in Borderline Personality Disorder
Principal Investigator:
Paul H. Soloff, MD
For Information Contact:

Mary Jones; jonesm@upmc.edu; (412) 246-5367

What We Are Studying:
Participants are interviewed about their moods, behaviors, and personality traits related to borderline personality disorder.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Individuals ages 18-45, who have experienced symptoms of borderline personality disorder, such as: troubled personal relationships, chronic feelings of emptiness or boredom, difficulty controlling anger or frustration, mood swings, self-destructive or impulsive behaviors, or history of self-inflicted pain or injury.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals with current or lifetime DSM-IV defined psychotic disorder (such as, schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, delusional disorder), Bipolar disorder, and IQ < 70. The following are exclusions for the fMRI portion of the study only: 1) ferro-magnetic implants such as cardiac pacers, cochlear implants, aneurysm clips, history of metal in eyes or other ferromagnetic body artifacts; 2) inability to fit in the scanner; 3) claustrophobia or inability to tolerate brief confinement in the scanner; 4) pregnancy.
What Participation Involves:
After completion of a telephone screen to determine eligibility, subjects complete a series of diagnostic screening interviews. Upon completion of these, if they make it into the study, they are scheduled for a baseline assessment, and if they wish to participate, an optional fMRI scan.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Subjects are compensated $25 for each of the three diagnostic interviews, and $50 for the baseline interview. They are also compensated $50 for the one hour fMRI scan (for a potential total of $175).


Project Title:
Emotion & Physiology Assessment Study (EPAS)
Principal Investigator:
Greg Siegle, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Melissa Milbert, Clinical Interviewer & Screener. 412-383-5447, milbertmm@upmc.edu, Loeffler Bldg, room 230, 121 Meyran Ave.

What We Are Studying:
We are doing this to examine brain and physiological reactions to emotional information. We are particularly interested in how the brain regulates reactions to stimuli that are usually considered emotional, such as pictures, words, sounds, and stories.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Native English speaking adults 18-58 years old who are able to undergo fMRI scanning and are currently depressed, or anxious, but preferably meeting criteria for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
People with history of severe head trauma, stroke, seizures, vision or hearing problems, contraindications for fMRI, current or historical bipolar I, psychotic disorders, or current substance dependence.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will be asked to complete a series of four visits at UPMC facilities in Oakland including the MRI Research Center in Presbyterian Hospital. On the first two days, we will do interviews to assess one’s well-being and mental health history, and ask participants to complete some forms. These visits will last approximately 3 hours each. On the third visit participants will complete some tasks at a computer while we record their eye position, pupil dilation, breathing, heart rate, brain waves, and more. This visit lasts approximately 3-4 hours. Finally, on the fourth visit, which is 3.5 hours long, participants do a one-and-a-half-hour fMRI and complete some forms.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Up to $350 for full participation. Compensated up to $60 for each interview visit (or $20/hour up to 3 hours for screen outs. The lab and scan visits pay $100 each and there are opportunities for on time and task bonuses.


Project Title:
STOP PD II (Sustaining Remission of Severe Depression II)
Principal Investigator:
Ellen Whyte, MD
For Information Contact:

Joelle Scanlon, PhD; Email: scanjm2@upmc.edu; Telephone: 412-246-6012

What We Are Studying:
Most of us have heard of depression, but few people may know about a type of depression that appears along with psychosis (or a loss of touch with reality). Referred to as psychotic major depression (PMD), it’s a surprisingly common mental disorder that affects more than one in 100 individuals. Researchers know that combination treatment (using both an antipsychotic + antidepressant) is needed when using medication to treat severe depression with psychosis. Now, researchers are working to understand how long people need to stay on an antipsychotic medication to prevent new episodes of psychosis after recovering from their initial symptoms.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Individuals, ages 18 to 85 years old, who experience the following symptoms: Persistently sad mood, feelings of hopelessness/pessimism, irritability/restlessness, poor sleep, feelings of guilt or worthlessness, poor concentration or memory problems, fatigue or poor energy, thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts, severe, distressing worries, hearing/seeing things that are bizarre or improbable, ideas or ways of thinking that are not true. Participation can begin in an inpatient or outpatient setting.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals with current/lifetime DSM-IV defined psychotic disorder (e.g., schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, delusional disorder), Bipolar disorder, current DSM-IV defined OCD or Body Dysmorphic Disorder, DSM-IV defined substance abuse/dependence within the last 3 months, current diagnosis of dementia/significant premorbid cognitive impairment, Type I diabetes Mellitus, Pregnancy or plan to become pregnant, Medical instability
What Participation Involves:
First, participants will undergo a complete psychiatric and medical assessment, including a physical exam and blood tests, to make sure that the study medications are appropriate and safe for the individual. Individuals who are eligible to participate in Phase I will receive a combination of an antidepressant (Zoloft) and an antipsychotic (Zyprexa) for up to 20 weeks. If the participant responds to these medications, he/she will have the option of entering Phase 2, during which the participant will either continue with Zoloft + Zyprexa, or receive Zoloft + Placebo, for up to 36 weeks. The participant’s mood and overall health will be assessed frequently throughout the study. Study participants receive medication and medical care at no cost.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
$10 for Phase 1 research visits, $20 for Phase 2 research visits, Assistance with transportation if needed.


Project Title:
Emotion Regulation in Depression
Principal Investigator:
Jay Fournier, PhD
For Information Contact:
Danielle Gilchrist, gilchristd@upmc.edu, 412-624-5541

What We Are Studying:
We will be using functional magnetic resonance imaging (or fMRI) to take pictures of your brain while you view different types of pictures, words, or sentences on a computer screen. We will compare fMRI scans from people with depression to those scans from people with no disorders. This will help to improve our understanding of the way the brain works in people who have depression.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Individual that are: 1) Aged 18-40; 2) Currently depressed OR who have no history of psychiatric disorders and 3) Must be right handed.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
1) Individuals diagnosed with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or an active alcohol or substance use disorder; 2) Individuals currently receiving psychiatric medication or psychotherapy and 3) Individuals with a history of head trauma.
What Participation Involves:
There are two visits involved in this study. The first will involve interviews and questionnaires. During the second visit, participants will undergo an fMRI scan and complete additional questionnaires.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants will be compensated up to $110 for completing both visits ($25 for the first visit, $85 for the second visit). The study will provide vouchers for bus fare or parking passes at study approved lots.


Project Title:
A New Statistical Paradigm for Measuring Psychopathology Dimensions in Youth (YCAT Study)
Principal Investigator:
David Brent, MD
For Information Contact:

Brandie George-Milford (Telephone: 412-246-5629 or 412-586-9405; Email: ycat@upmc.edu)

What We Are Studying:
The purpose of the study is to learn more about the assessment of mood and behavior problems in children.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Boys and girls 7-17 years old that are in treatment for mood or behavioral problem and their legal guardians/parents.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Youth with a diagnosis of psychosis or autism are not eligible.
What Participation Involves:
Participation involves one visit, lasting approximately 2 hours, for a youth-parent pair. The visit includes taking the YCAT survey on an iPad and answering between 150-200 questions about health, mood, and behaviors.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Yes, compensation is provided. Please contact the study coordinator for more details.


Project Title:
PASS Study for Youth Depression
Principal Investigator:
Dana McMakin, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Candice Croft; Telephone: 412-383-5190; Email: croftcm@upmc.edu.

What We Are Studying:
The purpose of this research study is to develop non-medication treatment approaches for youth depression that are informed by new research in emotion, motivation, and brain development in adolescence. The long-term goal of this study is to decrease lifetime impairments from these common disorders in youth.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
MMales and females between the ages of 12 to 16 years old who are depressed and not currently in talk therapy.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals ineligible to participate are youth with metal objects or devices in the body, such as dental braces, metal plates, or pacemakers, etc. Dental fillings are allowed.
What Participation Involves:
Participation involves an assessment of symptoms, as well as 6 one-on-one intervention sessions from highly trained professional clinicians at no cost. All participants will complete interviews, online questionnaires, computer tasks, and functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI scans involve a magnet taking pictures of the blood flow in the youth’s brain and are painless).
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants will be compensated for taking part in study and the cost of parking to participate in the project is provided. Please contact the project coordinator for details.


Project Title:
Mismatch Negativity and Complex Second-Order Sensory Memory in Schizophrenia
Principal Investigator:
Dean Salisbury, PhD
For Information Contact:

Individuals with Schizophrenia please contact Kevin Eklund, RN, Email: EklundKD@upmc.edu, Telephone: (412) 586-9009
Individuals who do not have Schizophrenia please call the CNRL lab phone number, Telephone: (412) 246-6533

What We Are Studying:
This study seeks to understand more about auditory perceptual and memory problems in psychosis by studying (1) individuals who have just developed symptoms for the first time and have little or no treatment for the symptoms, (2) those with chronic schizophrenia, and (3) healthy individuals with no mental health problems.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Males and Females, Ages 18-55, who either: (1) have received treatment for the first time in the past 2 months for psychosis; (2) have a diagnosis of schizophrenia AND have had at least 3 hospitalizations for psychosis; or (3) healthy individuals with no history of mental health problems.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Those with a history of a diagnosed learning disorder, previous treatment for childhood ADHD, neurological disorder (like seizures) or severe head injury, drug/alcohol dependence. Certain medical illnesses may also exclude individuals from participating.
What Participation Involves:
A screening interview will determine eligibility. Those eligible will complete an EEG session, in which they will hear series of different sounds while watching a silent movie and having their brainwaves recorded to measure sensory memory. Participants will also complete clinical interviews and neuropsychological testing. Approximate time to completion can be up to 10 hours.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Individuals may receive up to $150 for successful completion of the study.


Project Title:
Neural and Social Processes of Positive Affect in Children at Risk for Depression
Principal Investigator:
Judith Morgan, PhD
For Information Contact:

Catherine Venable; pittcarelab@gmail.com; (412) 624-7991

What We Are Studying:
Reward-related processing in young children at familial risk for depression.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Biological mothers with or without a history of depression and their 6 to 8 year old emotionally healthy children.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Mothers with a history of Bipolar Disorder or Psychosis. Children with psychiatric illnesses or developmental delays.
What Participation Involves:
Visit 1: 3 hour laboratory visit (includes clinical interviews, questionnaires, and child behavioral tasks). Visit 2: 90 minute laboratory visit (includes an fMRI scan for the child).
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Compensation is provided. Please contact Catherine Venable for more details.


Project Title:
Emotional Memory Consolidation during Sleep in Adolescents with and without Anxiety (The EMU Study)
Principal Investigator:
Dana McMakin, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Candice Croft, Project Coordinator; Telephone: 412-383-5190; Email: croftcm@upmc.edu; Website: www.RemedyResearch.com

What We Are Studying:
The purpose of this study is to learn more about the role of sleep in how we process and store emotional memories and experiences.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Males and females between the ages of 10 to 16 years old who struggle with anxiety.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals who take psychiatric medications.
What Participation Involves:
Those eligible will come to our location in Oakland for two study visits during which: 1) Parents and children will complete psychiatric evaluations and questionnaires; 2) Children will spend either one full day, *OR* one overnight stay at a Sleep Lab at the University of Pittsburgh; and 3) During their time at the lab, they will be asked to complete some questionnaires and computer tasks.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants will be compensated for taking part in the study, and parking is provided. Please contact the project coordinator for details.


Project Title:
MS Heart Study
Principal Investigator:
Rebecca Thurston, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Shannon Nichter: 412-624-2016 OR Dana Schreiber: 412-648-7096; Email: msheartstudy@gmail.com

What We Are Studying:
The study is designed to better understand the development of cardiovascular risk in midlife women.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Healthy volunteers, women, non-smoking, no known cardiovascular disease, not taking hormones, cardiac medications, insulin or antidepressants. No history of hysterectomy or removal of ovaries. Women with no hot flashes or daily hot flashes may be eligible.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Men, women under age 40 or over age 60, currently smoking or using tobacco products, women who had had a hysterectomy or bilateral oophorectomy, or are currently pregnant. Women using taking hormones, antidepressants or undergoing chemotherapy currently or in the last three months. Women undergoing treatment for cardiovascular disease, using insulin for the treatment of diabetes, or with a history of stroke.
What Participation Involves:
Participation includes wearing monitors that measure heart rate, hot flashes, and sleep as you go about your daily activities. Study procedures also include ultrasound images of your blood vessels and one fasting blood draw.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants are eligible to receive $150 compensation. Study also provides compensation for bus fares and parking fees for lab visits.


Project Title:
Puberty, Emotions, and the Brain
Principal Investigator:
Cecile Ladouceur, PhD
For Information Contact:

Claire Dempsey; dempseycm@upmc.edu; (412) 383-8134; Eunice Matela; mateae@upmc.edu; (412) 383-8134; Study email; pebs@pitt.edu

What We Are Studying:
We are studying the effects of puberty on adolescent brain development and vulnerability to affective disorders.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Females ages 10-12 years old and males ages 11-13 years old.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Children with metal in their bodies (e.g. plates, braces); children with diagnosed mental health disorders; children with left-handedness; and pregnant females.
What Participation Involves:
Participation involves visiting our lab with a parent and completing computer games while we take pictures of your brain. Mental and physical assessments will also be completed.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Compensation is provided. Please contact the study coordinator for more details.


Project Title:
Acute Psychotherapy for Bipolar II Disorder
Principal Investigator:
Holly Swartz, M.D.
For Information Contact:

Please contact Joan Buttenfield at buttenfieldja@upmc.edu; or by telephone at (412) 246-5588.

What We Are Studying:
We are conducting research to understand whether an experimental psychotherapy is effective in patients with Bipolar II depression when it is given with, or without, a medication.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Men and women, ages 18 to 65, who have a diagnosis of Bipolar II Disorder, currently depressed.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Severe or poorly controlled concurrent medical disorders, presence of any psychotic or organic mental disorder, bipolar I disorder, current alcohol or drug dependence, primary OCD, primary eating disorders, borderline personality disorder or antisocial personality disorder, acute suicidal or homicidal ideation or requiring psychiatric hospitalization, prior lack of response to at least 6 weeks of 300 mg of quetiapine.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will receive up to 20 weeks of treatment that consists of Interpersonal Social Rhythm Therapy for Bipolar Depression and be randomized to receive either the medication Seroquel (quetiapine) or a placebo and have follow-up assessments at 36 and 52 weeks. Patients will receive a psychiatric evaluation, medical evaluation that may include a physical examination, laboratory tests and visits with a study psychotherapist and psychiatrist at no cost.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants are compensated $40 at entry, $20 each for assessments at weeks 8, and 12, $30 each for assessments at weeks 20, 36, and 52 (total of $170). Travel reimbursement with either parking vouchers or bus tickets. Food vouchers may also be provided for UPMC dining services during other lengthy research appointments.


Project Title:
Cortical Cells, Circuits, Connectivity and Cognition in Psychosis
Principal Investigator:
Beatriz Luna, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Kevin Eklund, RN, BSN; eklundkd@upmc.edu; (412) 586-9009 for the first-episode psychosis studies or Alicia Thomas, MS; thomasaa@upmc.edu; (412) 586-9096 for healthy control studies.

What We Are Studying:
We are trying to learn about the causes of psychotic symptoms and are addressing this problem in a number of ways using recently developed methods of studying the structure and functioning of the brain and thinking processes that we believe may be involved. The purpose of this study is to better understand which aspects of brain functioning are affected in psychotic illnesses and whether this changes over time.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Males and Females, Ages 14-35: (1) first-episode of psychosis with little/no previous treatment, and (2) healthy controls with no history of a psychiatric disorder.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Those with certain medical/neurological conditions, mental retardation, pregnant women, substance dependence in the previous six months or abuse (except for alcohol and cannabis) in the previous month are not eligible to participate. Further, healthy controls who have a history of antipsychotic treatment or a first-degree family history of psychosis are not eligible.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will be asked to complete clinical and diagnostic interviews, urine drug screen, neuropsychological assessments, and imaging and electroencephalography (EEG) studies. Diagnosis will be re-assessed at 6 months for individuals experiencing their first episode of psychosis.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants may receive up to $225 at baseline and $75 at the 6-month follow-up.


Project Title:
ADAPT: Addressing Depression and Pain Together
Principal Investigator:
Jordan F. Karp, M.D.
For Information Contact:

Dana Barvinchak Williams (Telephone: 412-246-6015; Email: barvdm@upmc.edu)

What We Are Studying:
We know that low back pain and depression often make each other worse. Some patients notice an improvement in both low back pain and depression when they are treated with an antidepressant medication alone. However, for individuals who do not improve with an antidepressant medication that has also been observed to have anti-pain properties, we want to compare two treatments to see which is better. In this clinical trial, we are testing whether increasing the dose of medication along with supportive care or increasing the dose of medication and adding Problem Solving Therapy specific for managing the problems of low back pain and depression is the more effective treatment.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Men and women aged 60 or older who are experiencing both chronic low back pain and depression.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals who are wheelchair-bound or are unable to tolerate the study medication.
What Participation Involves:
Depending on a participant's response, the study lasts between 6 and 20 weeks. During the first 6 weeks, participants receive a medication called venlafaxine (Effexor) and supportive care. Those participants who do not improve will be randomly assigned to one of two groups. One group receives higher-dose venlafaxine with continuing supportive care. The other group receives higher-dose venlafaxine with a counseling intervention called Problem Solving Therapy for Depression and Pain.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
To compensate participants for their time and travel, those who complete the first 6 weeks receive $60. Those who complete the second 14 weeks of the study receive another $60. Those participants who agree to one blood draw will be compensated another $10 (for a potential of $130).


Project Title:
Neural Dimensions of Attention Bias Modification for Transdiagnostic Anxiety
Principal Investigator:
Rebecca Price, PhD
For Information Contact:

Danielle Gilchrist, gilchristd@upmc.edu, 412-624-5541

What We Are Studying:
This study examines a new computer-based intervention designed to reduce anxiety. The study also examines how the brain functions in anxious individuals.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Individuals age 18-55 with clinically significant anxiety.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals currently taking antidepressant or anti-anxiety medications.
What Participation Involves:
Over a 1-month period, participants will complete a clinical interview, questionnaires, an fMRI brain scan, and repeated practice on a computer-based task.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Compensation of up to $240 is provided upon completion of study.


Project Title:
Treatment of Overweight Induced by Antipsychotic Medication in Young People with ASD: A Research Study
Principal Investigator:
Benjamin L. Handen, PhD
For Information Contact:

Sarah McAuliffe-Bellin, M.Ed.; mcausj@upmc.edu; (412) 235-5447

What We Are Studying:
The use of metformin versus a placebo to decrease weight or weight gain associated with the use of atypical antipsychotic medications in children with autism spectrum disorders.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
The following individuals may be eligible to participate: Male and Female youth; Ages 6 years to 17 years, 4 months; Have an Autism Spectrum Diagnosis; Currently take medicines such as Abilify, Risperdal, Zyprexa, Geodon (atypical antipsychotics); Have experienced significant weight gain since beginning their medication.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals who have previously been on Metformin; Individuals who are not on a stable dose of their medication.
What Participation Involves:
8 clinic visits over 16 weeks and an optional continuation with 5 clinic visits for an additional 16 weeks.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Families are provided a stipend for all completed visits. Contact the study coordinator for more details.


Project Title:
Aging Well, Sleeping Efficiently (AgeWise) Study
Principal Investigator:
Timothy Monk, Ph.D., D.Sc.
For Information Contact:

Call toll free 1-866-647-8283 or Laurie Brar, CRNP, MSN at brarlk@upmc.edu or 412-246-6445

What We Are Studying:
Brain function in older adults with and without insomnia, and the changes in brain function that occur after a behavioral treatment of the insomnia. The research covers several different domains, including brain electrical activity (EEG), 24-hour biological rhythms, reactions to stress, imaging of brain function, and genetics related to sleep
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Men and women age 60 and older who have had chronic insomnia for at least 6 months, characterized by and difficulty staying asleep. Participants must be in stable medical condition; have no history of a neurologic disorder or stroke, not be taking medications for sleep or depression, and not have been diagnosed with or treated for sleep apnea. Good-sleeping older adults meeting similar criteria will also be recruited (see below).
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Men and women under 60 years of age; history of neurologic disorder or stroke, taking medications for sleep or depression, diagnosed or treated for sleep apnea. Certain other exclusionary criteria (e.g., metal in the body) also apply to specific laboratory evaluations.
What Participation Involves:
Those who are eligible for the study will be given a detailed health and sleep screening. If they pass that screening, they will then participate in one of three different laboratory evaluations, each lasting several days, which will be conducted twice: Once before, and once after behavioral treatment for insomnia. These evaluations will be supplemented by data obtained from diaries, questionnaires and interviews.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants are compensated between $500 and $600 depending upon the laboratory evaluation to which they are assigned. We are also recruiting good sleeping seniors meeting similar criteria. Good sleeping seniors only participate once in the laboratory evaluation and do not receive treatment. They are compensated between $250 and $300 depending upon the laboratory evaluation to which they are assigned.


Project Title:
Relationship Quality, Sleep, and Cardiovascular Risk in Military Couples
Principal Investigator:
Anne Germain, Ph.D.
For Information Contact:

Tyler Conrad (Email: conradt@upmc.edu; Telephone: 412-383-2131)

What We Are Studying:
The purpose of the study is to understand the connection between sleep and how couples function in their relationships, and how these processes may influence cardiovascular risk factors in military families.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
1) Male or female Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) or Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) or Operation New Dawn (OND) returnees and their spouses; 2) Between the ages of 18 and 50 years old; 3) Heterosexual Married or couples cohabiting for at least 1 years and 4) Currently sleeping together (>4 days/week).
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Individuals taking medications or otherwise currently being treated for existing CVD (including hypertension, high-cholesterol) use of insulin or oral medications for diabetes. Individuals that use continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) for sleep apnea or with severe, untreated sleep apnea (as defined by AHI>16 using portable apnea screening device). Women who are pregnant or breast feeding or Couples caring for a child under the age of 6 months.
What Participation Involves:
STEP 1: You will meet with a study staff member and go over the study in detail, and will begin to complete study-related interviews and questionnaires. You will go home with an in-home apnea screening device for you to use overnight which will assess for any sleep disorders. You will then individually visit our offices to meet with a study clinician. Each of these visits will take approximately 3 hours to complete. STEP 2: Over a 10-day period, we will ask you to wear a watch that will record your activity level, as well as provide you with a Palm Pilot to record daily events. On night 1 and night 2 study staff will arrive in your home to deliver and set up sleep monitoring equipment. On night 2, we will also provide you with supplies to collect overnight urine samples. At a convenient time between nights 3 and 10, you will wear a blood pressure monitor for 48 consecutive hours. The blood pressure monitors are portable devices which can be hidden under clothing. STEP 3: You will be asked to come back to our offices in the morning to provide a fasting blood draw, and you will be asked to engage in 2 videotaped discussions with your partner. This visit will last approximately 3 hours.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Participants are eligible for up to $400 in total compensation for completing all aspects of the project.


Project Title:
Diamond Brain Imaging Study
Principal Investigator:
Mary Phillips, M.D.
For Information Contact:

TEXT: DIAMOND to 412-999-2758; EMAIL: fmristudies@upmc.edu; CALL: 412-383-3109; WEBPAGE: www.diamond.pitt.edu

What We Are Studying:
Using fMRI scan techniques, this study is focusing on differences in emotion and brain functioning in those experiencing severe distress compared to those who are not. No treatment is provided.
Who Is Eligible to Participate:
Young Adults age 18-25 currently experiencing distress severe enough that they have sought treatment. They do not have to meet any disorder but they also are eligible if they do. Matched young adults who have never experienced distress or any psychiatric disorders.
Who Is Not Eligible to Participate:
Those on psychotropic medications for more than a couple weeks (or controls - ever); Those with current alcohol or substance abuse; Those with a history of severe concussion, neurological disorder, metal in the body, having claustrophobia, or currently pregnant.
What Participation Involves:
Participants will have a full clinical evaluation to determine eligibility and then complete self-report questionnaires on the screen day. Following that they will have an fMRI scan where they will complete tasks in the scanner and complete a brief clinical assessment & self-report forms. There is also a blood draw, if the participant agrees. For the distressed group, there are 2 follow-up clinical appointments at 6- and 12- months.
Do Participants Receive Compensation as Part of the Study:
Yes
What compensation Do Participants Receive:
Compensation for participation is as follows: $25 – screen visit; $75 – scan visit with potential to ‘win’ $6 more in the tasks/games in the scanner; $20 – blood draw; and $30 - follow-up visits.