David Nutt is a neuropsychopharmacologist specialising in the research of drugs that affect the brain and conditions such as addiction, anxiety, and sleep. He studied medicine at the University of Cambridge and then took his clinical training at Guys Hospital, London. He completed a ground-breaking study on inverse antagonists while working as a clinical scientist between 1978 and 1982. He moved to the US National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism and returned to the UK in 1988 to become the director of psychopharmacology at the University of Bristol.
David is most widely known for work which has questioned public and political assumptions about the relative harms of legal and illegal recreational drugs through objective analysis real data on harms and risk. He holds visiting professorships in Australia, New Zealand, and the Netherlands and is a former President of the British Association of Psychopharmacology and of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology. He was the recipient of the 2013 John Maddox Prize for promoting sound science and evidence on a matter of public interest, whilst facing difficulty or hostility in doing so. He is also former President of the British Neuroscience Association and European Brain Council, and a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Royal College of Psychiatrists, and the Academy of Medical Sciences.
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