NCRG Honors Wendy Slutske With 2011 Scientific Achievement Award

Slutske Recognized for Her Exceptional Contributions to the Field of Research on Gambling Disorders

Oct 3, 2011

WASHINGTON–The National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG) has named Wendy S. Slutske, Ph.D., professor in the department of psychological sciences at the University of Missouri-Columbia, the recipient of the 2011 Scientific Achievement Award in recognition of her contributions to the field of research on gambling disorders.

‘The NCRG is proud to present this award to Dr. Slutske for her pioneering work and seminal research on gambling disorders,’ said Glenn Christenson, chairman of the NCRG. ‘She is regarded as the world’s leading expert on the behavioral genetics of gambling disorders and has been at the forefront of advancing research and understanding of this and other addictions.’

Dr. Slutske’s work on the landmark all-male Vietnam Era Twin Study demonstrated that there are shared genetic factors that contribute to the risk for gambling disorders, alcohol use disorders and antisocial behavior. When she replicated these findings to include women, she was the first to demonstrate that the ‘genetic architecture’ for gambling disorders is similar in men and women.

Dr. Slutske’s work has extended beyond behavioral genetics. Her analysis of large epidemiological studies has led to the ground-breaking finding that gambling disorders are episodic rather than chronic. Her research, conducted in the U.S. and Australia, demonstrated low treatment-seeking for and high rates of natural recovery from gambling disorders. Her recent work also has revealed that a large number of people who recovered from gambling disorders were able to continue to gamble without symptoms of pathological gambling.

Dr. Slutske has published more than 100 articles in highly-cited, peer-reviewed journals. Her research has been supported by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Drug Abuse. She is the recipient of numerous awards including the Gold Chalk Award for Excellence in Graduate Education at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

‘Based on her stellar record of research accomplishments in the field of gambling studies, I can think of no one more deserving of the NCRG Scientific Achievement Award,’ said Kenneth J. Sher, Ph.D., Curators’ Professor of Psychological Sciences at the University of Missouri-Columbia. ‘In a relatively short amount of time, [Wendy] has clearly become one of the leading researchers of gambling disorders in the world.’

The award will be presented at a luncheon Oct. 3 at The Sands Expo and Convention Center at The Venetian in Las Vegas, Nev., during the 12th annual NCRG Conference on Gambling and Addiction. The conference is sponsored by the NCRG in partnership with the NCRG Centers of Excellence in Gambling Research at the University of Minnesota and Yale University and in conjunction with Global Gaming Expo (G2E).

Recipients of the Scientific Achievement Award are selected by an independent committee of distinguished leaders in the field of addictions and gambling research. Members of the 2011 committee include Tammy Chung, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh; Robert Ladouceur, Ph.D., professor emeritus of psychology, Laval University; Craig Nagoshi, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology, Arizona State University; Marc N. Potenza, M.D., professor of psychiatry, Yale University School of Medicine; and Katherine Spilde, Ph.D., M.B.A., chair of the Sycuan Institute on Tribal Gaming and associate professor, San Diego State University.

Previous recipients of the NCRG’s Scientific Achievement Award include Alex Blaszczynski, Ph.D.; Renee Cunningham-Williams, Ph.D., M.P.E., L.C.S.W.; Robert Custer, M.D.; Jon E. Grant, J.D., M.D., M.P.H.; Rina Gupta, Ph.D.; David C. Hodgins, Ph.D.; Robert Ladouceur, Ph.D.; Nancy Petry, Ph.D.; Marc N. Potenza, M.D., Ph.D.; Howard J. Shaffer, Ph.D., C.A.S.; Ken C. Winters, Ph.D.; and Suck Won Kim, M.D.

For NCRG Conference updates, including on-site reporting about the sessions and audio posts from leading researchers and industry representatives, visit the NCRG’s blog –Gambling Disorders 360°– and connect with the NCRG onFacebookandTwitter.

To obtain additional information on the NCRG’s conference, To obtain press credentials for events related to the conference, or to arrange interviews with conference participants or Dr. Slutske, please contact Amy Martin at 202-552-2689 While the conference is in progress Oct. 2-4, please contact Amy Martin on-site at 225-910-2804.