Adams Lab

In the research laboratory led by Dr. Zachary Adams, investigators are focused on improving access to high-quality clinical services for children, teens and families impacted by mental health problems and substance use—through research, clinical care and education.

Active Research

The Adams Lab team works closely with partners across the United States—from various schools of Indiana University to the Medical University of South Carolina. Members also work closely with primary-care providers, area schools, and other local and state agencies to deliver evidence-based programs to promote emotional well-being and reduce risk for substance use problems in children and teens.

Researchers are particularly focused on developing and evaluating new ways to use technology to improve behavioral health services for youth and families. Investigators are involved in several exciting projects where these technologies are used to deliver or improve interventions and provide support to community-based providers. Other projects in the Adams Lab involve refining existing interventions designed to promote resilience in young people who have experienced trauma and struggle with certain behavioral or emotional problems, like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), substance use, risky sexual behavior and depression. Other work focuses on answering questions about how stress, adversity and traumatic experiences are related to how teens think, feel and act. This research team carries out studies aimed at uncovering how certain aspects of a person’s biology make some people especially vulnerable to the effects of stress and substance use problems, while other biological factors promote resilience. By understanding how a variety of factors influence how young people respond to stressful experiences, researchers can do a better job designing and delivering interventions that work.

K23DA038257, mHealth tools to enhance treatment of teen substance abuse and mental illness

UL1TR001108, Launch and initial evaluation of the Indiana Behavioral Health Access Program for Youth (IN-BeHAPY) in Pediatric Primary Care

ORWH P50DA016511 Pilot Program, Reward-related brain activity as a mechanism linking traumatic stress to substance use problems and depression in adolescent girls

Recent Publications

For a full list of Dr. Adams publication history, please find him on PubMed or visit Dr. Adams site.

Adams, Z. W., Meinzer, M., Mandel, H., Voltin, J., Caughron, B., & Wang, Z. (In Press). Cue-dependent inhibition in posttraumatic stress disorder and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Journal of Anxiety Disorders. PMCID: In process.

Danielson, C. K., Adams, Z. W., & Hanson, R. F. (In Press). Risk Reduction though Family Therapy: Exposure-Based Treatment for Co-Occurring PTSD and Substance Use Problems Among Adolescents. In S. Back & A. Vujanovic (Eds). Posttraumatic Stress and Substance Use Disorders: A Comprehensive Clinical Handbook. Routledge: New York, New York.

Mirhashem, R., Allen, H. C., Adams, Z. W., van Stolke-Cooke, K., Legrand, A., & Price, M. (2017). The intervening role of impulsivity on the association between childhood maltreatment, PTSD, and opiate-related problems. Addictive Behaviors, 69 98-103. PMCID: PMC5384831.

Adams, Z. W. McClure, E. A., Gray, K. M., Danielson, C. K., Treiber, F. A., & Ruggiero, K. J. (2017). Mobile devices for remote biomarker acquisition in psychiatric clinical research. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 85, 1-14. PMCID: PMC5191962

Danielson, C. K., Cohen, J., Adams, Z. W., Youngstrom, E. A., Soltis, K., Amstadter, A. B., & Ruggiero, K. J. (2017). Clinical decision making following natural disasters: efficient identification of posttraumatic stress disorder risk in adolescents. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 45, 117-129. PMCID: PMC5075270

Bountress, K., Adams, Z. W., Gilmore, A. K., Amstadter, A. B., Thomas, S., Danielson. C. K. (2017). Associations among impulsivity, trauma history, and alcohol misuse within a young adult sample. Addictive Behaviors, 64, 179-184 . PMCID: PMC5362376

Cohen, J., Danielson, C. K., Adams, Z. W., & Ruggiero, K. J. (2016). Distress tolerance and social support in adolescence: predicting risk for internalizing and externalizing symptoms following a natural disaster. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 38(4), 538-546. PMCID: PMC5283801.

Derefinko, K. J., Charnigo, R. J., Peters, J. R., Adams, Z. W., Milich, R., & Lynam, D. R. (2016). Substance use trajectories from early adolescence through the transition to college. Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, 77, 924-935. PMCID: PMC5088174

Cohen, J. R., Adams, Z. W., Menon, S. V., Youngstrom, E. A., Bunnell, B. E., Acierno, R., Ruggiero, K. J., & Danielson, C. K. (2016). How should we assess for depression following a natural disaster? An ROC approach to post-disaster assessments in adolescents and adults. Journal of Affective Disorders, 202, 102-109. PMCID: PMC4947444

Adams, Z. W., McCauley, J. L., Back, S. E., Flanagan, J. C., Hanson, R. F., Killeen, T. K., & Danielson, C. K. (2016). Clinician perspectives on treating adolescents with comorbid posttraumatic stress disorder, substance use, and other problems. Journal of Child & Adolescent Substance Abuse, 25, 575-583. PMCID: PMC5100692

Join the Adams Lab Team

The team members of the Adams Lab are dedicated to training tomorrow’s researchers, clinicians and health educators through involvement in these various projects and welcome motivated students, residents, interns, fellows and other trainees to join the team. Undergraduate students with an interest in psychology, addiction, technology or health services research are encouraged to apply to join the laboratory team. Students from a range of departments, majors and programs who hold an overall GPA greater than 3.0 and are at least in second-year standing are considered. Students who meet criteria and are interested in joining the lab should complete the application form. Graduate and professional students, residents, and fellows interested in working with Adams research team are encouraged to contact Dr. Adams by email. Individuals seeking information about clinical training opportunities in the Adolescent Dual Diagnosis Program at Riley at IU Health can call 317-948-3481.

Lab Faculty

Zachary W. Adams, PhD

Zachary W. Adams, PhD

Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology

Additional Research Team Members

Other research team members include Samantha Hupp, Miyah Grant, Jonathon Tindall, Andrew Matthews, Dorothy LaPutt, Sara Khalid, Phillip Sojka, Taylor Pembrton and Lenzie Brewer.