Dr. Brady is a prominent leader in the substance abuse field at a national and international level. She is well known for her research in the area of psychiatric comorbidity and substance use disorders and pharmacotherapy of substance use disorders. She has had a particular focus on the area victimization and post-traumatic stress disorder in substance users, issues of particular importance to women. Her focus on psychiatric comorbidity in substance use disorders has led to investigations of gender-specific issues because of the high comorbidity of anxiety and affective disorders in substance-using women.
Dr. Brady began her research career conducting basic science work in the drug abuse field and received a Ph.D. in pharmacology. She moved into clinical and translational research after finishing her residency in psychiatry in 1989. She has been continuously federally funded to conduct research since 1989. Her recent research activities involve the interface between basic and clinical science investigating the mechanistic connection between stress and substance use disorders and in the translation of empirically-based treatments from academic medical centers to front-line treatment settings.
Dr. Brady is the Principal Investigator and Director of the Southern Consortium of the NIDA Clinical Trials Network. This NIH-sponsored program involves conducting clinical trials of empirically based substance abuse treatments in front-line treatment settings. This avenue of research is designed to enhance communication/collaboration so that clinical practice is increasingly informed by scientific development. Dr. Brady is also the PI and Center Director for one of eleven Specialized Centers of Research on Sex and Gender Factors Affecting Women’s Health. The center at MUSC, known as the Women’s Research Center (WRC) is a translational research center designed to forge connections between basic scientists and clinical investigators studying gender-based differences in substance use disorders. In 2005, Dr. Brady was appointed as the Assistant Dean for Clinical Research at MUSC and the Director of the MUSC General Clinical Research Center (GCRC).
In 2001 Dr. Brady received the Betty Ford award for her contributions to research on women's issues in the substance abuse area. Last year, South Carolina's governor Jim Hodges honored Dr. Brady by recognizing her achievements through the "Women of Achievement" award. Her contributions to drug abuse treatment throughout South Carolina and her long-standing history of mentoring women in science were specifically mentioned as achievements that were important in determining her selection for the award.
Dr. Brady has also directed a great deal of effort towards mentoring others. She was the director of the Addiction Psychiatry Fellowship Program from 1994-2004 and has served as a mentor for a number of post-doctoral fellows, residents and junior faculty. In 1999, she received the first mid-career development grant (K-24) awarded to a faculty member at MUSC.
In terms of national leadership, recognition and administrative experience, Dr. Brady served as President of the American Association of Education and Research in Substance Abuse from 1994-1996. She is currently the President of the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry, which is the largest professional group of psychiatrists focusing on work in substance use disorders.
In summary, Dr. Brady has achieved local and national prominence for her work in the substance abuse area. At MUSC, she is known for her mentorship, research skills and collaborative efforts with scientists from throughout the MUSC community.