Mark S. Gold

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Mark S. Gold is an American researcher and author on the effects of food, tobacco, cocaine, and other drugs on the brain. He has written over 1,000 scientific articles, chapters, and abstracts published in journals for neuroscientists and health professionals.

Gold was the 2015 John P. McGovern Award Recipient in honor of his contributions to public policy, treatment, research, and addiction prevention.[1]


Gold was the University of Florida Distinguished Alumni Professor for 2011-2014.[2][3] He was the Donald Dizney Eminent Scholar and was a distinguished professor of psychiatry, neuroscience, community health and family medicine. He is the former chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Florida College of Medicine.[4][5]

Gold was the sole member of the Division he created in the Department of Psychiatry, the Division of Addiction Medicine at UF.[6] He was the Founder of the Division, its treatment program, and the Florida Recovery Center. [7] With Bob DuPont and Tom McLellan, he has studied physician and health professionals who have become addicts and observed their outcomes after treatment. [8] He has reported on physician treatment since reporting on the sequential use of clonidine and naltrexone in addicted physicians.[9][10][11]

Gold has served as a consultant on website design for NIDA: The Science of Drug Abuse and Addiction in 2013[citation needed] and is a member of the ASAM Drug Testing White Paper Committee (2013).[12]

Gold was Chief Scientist for the Afghanistan National Urban Drug Use Survey which gathered information on second- and third-hand opium exposure in Kabul and other urban Afghan areas for the US State Department and the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs. The State Department's funded study identified second and third-hand exposure to opiates in the body, fluids, and hair of children of Kabul and subsequent epidemiological studies of the mothers.[13]


Gold has been working on addiction-based models for understanding hedonistic overeating, food addiction and the development of new therapies. He has carried out similar work for opiate addiction which led to the discovery of clonidine's efficacy in opiate withdrawal. His work in cocaine addiction led to the dopamine depletion hypothesis (Patent #4/312,878).[14]

Gold has studied smoking as well as second- and third-hand tobacco smoke with support from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and FAMRI. He has worked with the White House's Office of National Drug Control Policy, Media Partnership for a Drug Free America, the Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, and the Betty Ford Center Foundation in the area of drug use and youth.[15][16]

Gold has worked to evaluate the hypothesis that hedonistic overeating is a pathological attachment to food like any other addiction.[17] Gold is a co-editor of the 2012 textbook, Food and Addiction,[18] published by Oxford Press.

In an interview for the Congressional Quarterly (CQ Researcher), Gold stated that there is universal agreement that genes can be changed by exposure to drugs.[19] He used the example of a person whose mother smoked when she was pregnant. This person had genetic receptors that were changed because of the exposure, making that person more likely to become addicted to nicotine.[20] Intrauterine and early childhood exposure may also change risk trajectories for other drugs and food and become an acquired risk for obesity.

Since his retirement as a full-time academic in 2014, Gold has continued his teaching, mentoring, research, and writing as a University of Florida Emeritus Eminent Scholar[21] , Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Washington University and an active member of the Clinical Council at the Washington University School of Medicine’s Public Health Institute.[22] He has analyzed and presented epidemiological research on the opioid and emerging cocaine epidemics[23][24]. He has written and lectured on responses to reduce overdose deaths, medication assisted therapies [25] and opioid use disorders [26]. He regularly lectures at Medical Schools, Grand Rounds [27][28][29]and national scientific meetings on opioids, [30], cocaine [31] and the bench-to-bedside science in eating disorders, obesity, and addictions.[32]



  1. ^ "Mark Gold, MD, FASAM, Wins John P. McGovern Award". Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  2. ^ "Dr. Mark Gold named UF's Distinguished Alumni Professor". Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  3. ^ "Dr. Mark Gold named UF's Distinguished Alumni Professor" (Press release). University of Florida. May 19, 2011. Archived from the original on August 12, 2011. Retrieved October 4, 2012.
  4. ^ "Gold named chair of UF psychiatry department". UF Health, University of Florida Health. 2009-02-20. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  5. ^ "60th Anniversary CME Event". Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  6. ^ "Gold named chair of UF psychiatry department". UF Health, University of Florida Health. 2009-02-20. Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  7. ^ "Discovery to Recovery newsletter message from the chairman – August 2012". Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  8. ^ DuPont, Robert L.; McLellan, A. Thomas; White, William L.; Merlo, Lisa J.; Gold, Mark S. "Setting the standard for recovery: Physicians' Health Programs". Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. 36 (2): 159–171. doi:10.1016/j.jsat.2008.01.004. ISSN 0740-5472.
  9. ^ Merlo, Lisa J.; Gold, Mark S. "Prescription Opioid Abuse and Dependence Among Physicians: Hypotheses and Treatment". Harvard Review of Psychiatry. 16 (3): 181–194. doi:10.1080/10673220802160316. ISSN 1067-3229.
  10. ^ Washton, Arnold M.; Gold, Mark S.; Pottash, A. Carter. "Successful Use of Naltrexone in Addicted Physicians and Business Executives". Advances in Alcohol & Substance Abuse. 4 (2): 89–96. doi:10.1300/j251v04n02_08. ISSN 0270-3106.
  11. ^ Washton, Arnold M.; Gold, Mark S.; Pottash, A. Carter. "Successful Use of Naltrexone in Addicted Physicians and Business Executives". Advances in Alcohol & Substance Abuse. 4 (2): 89–96. doi:10.1300/j251v04n02_08. ISSN 0270-3106.
  12. ^ Drug Testing: A White Paper of the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM).
  13. ^ Cottler, Linda B; Ajinkya, Shaun; Goldberger, Bruce A; Ghani, Mohammad Asrar; Martin, David M; Hu, Hui; Gold, Mark S (2014). "Prevalence of drug and alcohol use in urban Afghanistan: Epidemiological data from the Afghanistan National Urban Drug Use Study (ANUDUS)". The Lancet Global Health. 2 (10): e592. doi:10.1016/S2214-109X(14)70290-6. PMID 25304635.
  14. ^[full citation needed]
  15. ^ "What is recovery? A working definition from the Betty Ford Institute". Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. 33 (3): 221–228. 2007-10-01. doi:10.1016/j.jsat.2007.06.001. ISSN 0740-5472.
  16. ^ "Addiction Medicine: Closing the Gap between Science and Practice". Retrieved 2018-11-12.
  17. ^ "Overlaps in the nosology of substance abuse and overeating: the translational implications of "food addiction"".
  18. ^ Brownell KD, Gold MS (Eds) (2012) Food and Addiction: A Comprehensive Handbook. Oxford University Press: New York, NY[page needed]
  19. ^ "Preventing Obesity". Retrieved 5 October 2017.
  20. ^ "Friedman J. Treating Addiction. CQ Researcher. 2014 May 2; 24(17)" (Press release).
  21. ^ "A Symbol of Honor and Truth".
  22. ^ "National Council".
  23. ^ "Opioids, Heroin, New Look, Not Old Drugs".
  24. ^ "New Look Old Drugs - 2018 Update".
  25. ^ "Naltrexone A Hi Story and Future Directions".
  26. ^ "Beyond Supply: How We Must Tackle the Opioid Epidemic".
  27. ^ "Yale Psychiatry Grand Rounds: October 24, 2014".
  28. ^ "60th Anniversary CME Event".
  29. ^ "What Can We Learn From Evaluating and Treating Physician Addicts?".
  30. ^ "Cocaine and Addiction Researcher".
  31. ^ "Stimulant Summit".
  32. ^ "FADAP Conference".
  33. ^ "Washington University in St. Louis Proof of Graduation".
  34. ^ "University of Florida - Proof of Graduation".
  35. ^ "Yale University - Proof of Graduation".