Our lab has two areas of interest. First, we develop and test psychological interventions, alone or in combination with medication, for the treatment of adolescent mood and substance use disorders. Second, we study personality during the adolescent or adult period, to better understand the factors associated with adaptative functioning in academic or career settings.
We have studied cognitive behavior therapy, including individual and family components, as an intervention for adolescent major depression. In the multi-site Treatment for Adolescents with Depression Study (TADS), we and our colleagues found that the combination of CBT and a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor yielded the best results in terms of efficacy, safety, and cost-effectiveness for adolescents with moderate to severe major depression. We have also studied CBT with motivational interviewing as an intervention for adolescent substance abuse. We are currently investigating whether effective treatment for depression can mitigate the risk of subsequent substance use disorders, and how comorbid disorders may affect the acute and longer-term outcome of substance abuse treatment in adolescents.