This is Archived Content

This content is available for historical purposes only. It may not reflect the current state of science or language from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA).
View current meetings on


February 24, 2004 - 12:00am
Lister Hill Auditorium, NIH, Bethesda, Maryland


NIDA Organizer(s): Nathan Appel Ph.D., Ro Nemeth-Coslett Ph.D., Dave Thomas Ph.D.

Purpose & Intent

This meeting was designed to introduce virtual reality (VR) technologies to the greater NIH research community, as well as to highlight some recent data studying craving using VR.

Meeting Outcome

The number of NIH employees currently involved in conducting or promoting VR research is relatively low at this time point. This meeting served as a vehicle to initiate interactions on this topic of interested NIH staff. It also allowed NIDA to highlight some important recent findings related to craving that were obtained using VR technologies. Lastly, this meeting helped illustrate the multitude of applications that VR has to an array of medical applications. 

Expected Follow-up

The goal of this meeting was to promote the use of VR technologies throughout the NIH. Various cross-institutional initiatives will likely follow. The ultimate goal for NIDA is to build a foundation of basic VR research, and to develop drug abuse treatment, prevention and education programs that use VR.

Resulting Publications

A number of news reporters were at this meeting. An article came out in the March issue of “The Washingtonian” where this technology was described and several of this meetings organizers were interviewed. Further, based on the press we have gotten, we are continuing to get requests to do interviews on medical applications of VR technologies. It is expected that this positive press will raise awareness of this technology as a medical treatment in general, and as a drug abuse treatment, prevention and education tool in particular.