- 117 Medical Behavioral Science Building
One focus of Dr. Lile’s research efforts is the study of cannabis-use disorder. Currently, this work is supported by an R01 to evaluate the voltage-dependent calcium channel ligand pregabalin as a medication for cannabis-use disorder, as determined using outpatient maintenance procedures to determine pharmacotherapy effects on cannabis use in the laboratory and in the natural environment. Dr. Lile is also collaborating with Dr. Kristin Ashford to examine the impact of cannabis use on perinatal responsiveness and birth outcomes. In addition, he collaborated on a grant application with Dr. Mark Fillmore to examine mechanisms of multisensory processing and impulse control in cannabis users. This year, Dr. Lile published one senior authored and one co-authored manuscript, as well as a first-authored book chapter based on research on cannabis-use disorder. In addition, he was invited to present his work in this area as a 1-hour B. F. Skinner lecture at the Association for Behavior Analysis International Annual Convention. Another active area of research for Dr. Lile is the development of pharmacotherapies for the treatment of stimulant-use disorder in collaboration with Drs. Craig Rush and Bill Stoops. Dr. Lile continues to make progress on his R01 to develop a translational platform to study mechanisms of cocaine choice in monkeys and humans in collaboration with colleagues at Virginia Commonwealth University. He presented results from this research at the College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) meeting. An R01 application to extend this project was submitted this year, which will use a reinforcement learning framework and translational procedures in rats and humans to determine the neurobehavioral and neurobiological basis for maladaptive cocaine choice. This award was reviewed favorably (15th percentile) and is currently being considered for funding. Dr. Lile also served as a Co-Investigator on nine R-level awards this year, including a new award to Dr. Stoops, and is a Co-Investigator on four additional R-level grants in this area that are under review. His involvement in stimulant research as a co-investigator resulted in three published manuscripts and two conference presentations. A third area of research involvement for Dr. Lile has been the study of the influence of individual differences such as personality factors on vulnerability to drug use in collaboration with Dr. Tom Kelly, which is supported by a P50 Center on Drug Abuse Translation. His involvement in that center resulted in two co-authored publications and two conference presentations. A resubmission application for that center was submitted recently, and included Dr. Lile as an MPI on a project that will examine the influence of drug effect expectancies and social environment on drug use vulnerability. A fourth, and new, area of research for Dr. Lile relates to alcohol use disorder. He is collaborating on a recently funded project to evaluate n-acetylcysteine as a medication for alcohol use disorder, and is a Co-Investigator on a recently submitted R01 application that will test a combination of drugs to target multiple monoamine systems that are dysregulated in alcoholics. Dr. Lile also published a manuscript as co-author related to neurofunctional deficits in dependent, heavy alcohol users. In addition to these research activities, Dr. Lile has been engaged in mentoring early career scientists. More specifically, he has mentored Dr. Michael Wesley, an Assistant Professor of Behavioral Science, on incorporating clinical pharmacology techniques into his neuroimaging and electrical brain stimulation research. Dr. Lile is serving as the mentor for Dr. Wesley’s pending K01 application and funded CCTS pilot award that aim to determine the ability of transcranial direct current stimulation to attenuate the cognitive impairing effects of THC, the primary active constituent of cannabis. Drs. Wesley and Lile also formed a team of inventors that successfully competed for financial support from NIDA and the Kentucky Science and Engineering Foundation to start a company, Largus Neural Systems, to develop a neuromodulatory device for substance use disorders, and recently submitted a Phase I SBIR contract to move this innovation forward. Dr. Lile is serving as a co-primary mentor for Drs. Craig Beavers and Kevin Hatton, two Ph.D. candidates in the UK Clinical and Translational Science (CTS) program. He is also serving as co-mentor for two post-doctoral fellows, Drs. Anna Reynolds and Joe Alcorn, and as a doctoral dissertation committee member for Ginny Weiss, Arit Harvanko, Aaron Smith and Justin Strickland, who are students in the Psychology graduate program. Dr. Lile has continued to provide service to the academic and research community. In 2017, he was a member of the CPDD Long Range Planning Committee, and served as a grant reviewer for the internal pilot research program supported by the UK Office of the Vice President for Research (UK VPR) and the Multidisciplinary Value Program supported by the UK VPR and CCTS. Dr. Lile was appointed to the editorial board for Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology and reviewed 12 manuscripts for various journals. Lastly, he has continued his service as a regular member of the University of Kentucky Institutional Review Board.