TOWARDS AN EDUCATION IN THE HISTORY OF NEUROPSYCHOPHARMACOLOGY
PART VII: To bridge the gaps in communication
Thomas A. Ban
Progress in neuropsychopharmacology depends to a great extent on interaction between basic scientists and clinicians. To provide a platform for their interaction several neuropsychopharmacology associations, international (Collegium Internationale Neuro-Psychopharmacologicum) and national (American College of Neuropsychopharmacology) were founded in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. It was envisaged that interaction will narrow the gap and harmonize activities between the two aspects of neuropsychopharmacology (basic/clinical), but this did not happen. Instead, as time passed, the gap between basic and clinical research widened (Ban 2011). By the mid-1980’s, this gap became so wide that communication between basic neuropharmacologists and clinical psychopharmacologists became difficult. As time passed, the difficulties grew and by the end of the 20th century, for clinical researchers, the technical language spoken by basic scientists became virtually incomprehensible, and for basic scientists the clinical information generated by psychiatrists did not provide the necessary feedback for their research. The breakdown in communication interfered with progress in neuropsychopharmacological research and the development of more selective drugs for the treatment of mental illness as well as with the discriminate use of available psychotropic drugs in patients (Ban 2011).
To bridge the gap in communication between individuals involved in different areas of neuropsychopharmacological resarch and between individuals involved in developing and using psychotropic drugs, INHN will offer a program consisting of self-contained courses that will be accessible first as postings on the INHN website. Some of these courses will become available later as e-books and/or in print. The program will be launched on December 5, 2015 with a course on Training Psychiatrists to Think Like Pharmacologists. It was created by Jose de Leon, a Spanish-born American professor of psychiatry with a most distinguished record in international education. Professor De Leon’s course will be delivered in the form of 34 PowerPoint presentations that will include an Introduction, lectures on theoretical issues and discussion of clinical cases.
Ban TA. Postscript to the series. In: Ban TA (editor). An Oral History of Neuropsychopharmacology. The First Fifty Years. Peer Interviews. Volume Ten (volume editor: Martin M. Katz). Brentwood: American College of Neuropsychopharmacology; 2011, pp, 227-37.
Thomas A. Ban
November 26, 2015