The HAPPY Lab
The Human Addiction PsychoPharmacologY Laboratory, directed by Dr. Emma Childs, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Illinois at Chicago, is a research laboratory dedicated to improving our understanding of addictive disorders. Our research examines the factors that contribute to substance abuse and dependence in healthy human volunteers. For example, genetic, personality, environmental (including stress) and physiological (including sex) factors can all influence an individual’s risk to develop a substance use disorder. We conduct our research by measuring the effects of psychoactive substances upon physiological, emotional and behavioral outcomes in a controlled lab environment.
Studies that administer drugs of abuse in a controlled research setting are vitally important to understand the basic mechanisms of brain function and also to learn more about the causes and consequences of addiction. In our studies, we follow guidelines published by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and the National Advisory Council on Drug Abuse (NACDA) for safe and ethical experimental administration of drugs in human subjects.