Symposium to focus on adolescent drinking

The Missouri Alcoholism Research Center (MARC) will host the third Guze Symposium on the challenges of adolescent drinking, with a particular focus on alcohol use by high school students, from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. today at the Eric P. Newman Education Center.

The symposium will feature local and national experts presenting their research related to high school-age drinking.

They will discuss models of adolescent alcohol use and abuse, including a behavioral genetics perspective of adolescent alcohol use, assessment and intervention; the connections of alcohol use with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and with suicide; and alcoholism prevention strategies.

“Adults who develop alcohol problems tend to date the beginnings of those problems to their high school and college years,” said Andrew C. Heath, D.Phil., director of MARC and the Spencer T. Olin Professor of Psychiatry. “We try to focus on young drinkers, and we invite experts from around the country to share their research on those at risk.”

The University houses MARC, but the center also involves investigators from Saint Louis University, the University of Missouri-Columbia, the Veterans Administration in St. Louis and Palo Alto, Calif., and the Queensland Institute for Medical Research in Brisbane, Australia.

The Guze Symposium is dedicated to the memory of the late Samuel B. Guze, M.D., who was a pioneer of the medical model of psychiatric illness and in the field of alcoholism research. His early studies of alcohol use and abuse were important in the movement to consider alcoholism a disease rather than a character flaw.

Guze joined the School of Medicine in 1951 and later served as vice chancellor for medical affairs and president of the Washington University Medical Center from 1971-1989. He also served as head of the Department of Psychiatry from 1971-1989 and again from 1993-97.

For more information, call 286-2203 or email