Technology transfer for the implementation of a clinical trials network on drug abuse and mental health treatment in Mexico

Viviana E. Horigian, Rodrigo A. Marín-Navarrete, Rosa E. Verdeja, Elizabeth Alonso, María A. Perez, José Fernández-Mondragón, Carlos Berlanga, María Elena Medina-Mora, José Szapocznik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Low- and middle-income countries (LMIC) lack the research infrastructure and capacity to conduct rigorous substance abuse and mental health effectiveness clinical trials to guide clinical practice. A partnership between the Florida Node Alliance of the United States National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network and the National Institute of Psychiatry in Mexico was established in 2011 to improve substance abuse practice in Mexico. The purpose of this partnership was to develop a Mexican national clinical trials network of substance abuse researchers and providers capable of implementing effectiveness randomized clinical trials in community-based settings. A technology transfer model was implemented and ran from 2011-2013. The Florida Node Alliance shared the "know how" for the development of the research infrastructure to implement randomized clinical trials in community programs through core and specific training modules, role-specific coaching, pairings, modeling, monitoring, and feedback. The technology transfer process was bi-directional in nature in that it was informed by feedback on feasibility and cultural appropriateness for the context in which practices were implemented. The Institute, in turn, led the effort to create the national network of researchers and practitioners in Mexico and the implementation of the first trial. A collaborative model of technology transfer was useful in creating a Mexican researcher-provider network that is capable of changing national practice in substance abuse research and treatment. Key considerations for transnational technology transfer are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)233-242
Number of pages10
JournalRevista Panamericana de Salud Publica/Pan American Journal of Public Health
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2015


  • Clinical trials as topic
  • Evidence-based practice
  • Health services research, methods
  • Mental health
  • Mexico
  • Science and technology information networks
  • Substance-related disorders
  • Technology transfer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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