Drugs as reinforcers--collaborative opportunities in epidemiology and behavioral pharmacology: comment on Alessi, Roll, Reilly, and Johanson (2002).
ABSTRACT Despite reliance on a relatively small sample, the study by S. M. Alessi, J. M. Roll, M. P. Reilly, and C.-E. Johanson (2002) yielded remarkably consistent results, indicating that drug preference can be switched using conditioning procedures. However, because the study included only adults with limited drug involvement, the findings need to be interpreted taking the nature of the sample into account. This limitation points to opportunities for collaboration between experimental and epidemiologic researchers. Specifically, nesting experimental studies within longitudinal epidemiologic studies would reduce the potential for bias in sample selection while providing experimental data that are usually not available in observational epidemiologic research.