University of Georgia counseling psychology professor Ezemenari M. Obasi believes that the interaction of the environment and one's genetic makeup can increase drug use vulernability in rural African Americans.
Obasi has received a two-year $471,683 grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, supported by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, to conduct research that examines the link between stress and the risk of drug addiction among rural African Americans.
There are a wide range of risk factors related to drug addiction from personality traits, personal history and genetic disposition to environmental stressors, said Obasi. He questions whether those risk factors are universal , predictors of all people or group specific. In the study, he will investigate the possibility that chronic stress is a risk factor experienced by African Americans.