George F. KOOB – Bethesda

George F. Koob


George F. Koob, is Director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA.  He is also a Senior Investigator at the Intramural Research Program of the National Institute on Drug Abuse where he directs the Neurobiology of Addiction Laboratory in the Integrative Neurosciences Research Branch


As an authority on alcohol use disorder, drug addiction and stress, he has contributed to our understanding of the neurocircuitry associated with the acute reinforcing effects of alcohol and drugs of addiction and the neuroadaptations of the reward and stress circuits associated with the transition to dependence.  Dr. Koob has published over 750 peer reviewed papers and several books including the “Neurobiology of Addiction,” a comprehensive treatise on emerging research in the field, and a textbook for upper division undergraduates and graduate students called “Drugs, Addiction and the Brain.” He has mentored 13 Ph. D students and 85 post-doctoral fellows and mentored or co-mentored 11 K99’s.


He received his Ph.D. in Behavioral Physiology from Johns Hopkins University in 1972. He did post-doctoral studies at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research and the University of Cambridge (England). He subsequently worked as a Staff Scientist in the Arthur Vining Davis Center for Behavioral Neurobiology at The Salk Institute.  He spent much of his early career at the Scripps Research Institute as the Director of the Alcohol Research Center, and as Professor and Chair of the Scripps’ Committee on the Neurobiology of Addictive Disorders. Dr. Koob is the recipient of many honors, including membership in the National Academy of Medicine (USA) and award of the Legion of Honor (France).