The Louisiana Addiction Research Center (LARC) at LSU Health Shreveport is a leader in addiction research. The LARC is committed to increasing knowledge and advancing research related to Substance Use Disorders to create a better quality of life for the citizens of our area.

The LARC synchronizes multiple areas of basic and clinical research, academia and Centers of Excellence within LSU Health Shreveport to foster collaborative, multidisciplinary research throughout Louisiana. The LARC is dedicated to developing a continuum of care in Louisiana that will leverage potential therapeutic models through these collaborations, ultimately resulting in advancing our care delivery abilities to improve outcomes in those who suffer from Substance Use Disorders.

Our Mission

The mission of LARC is to provide addiction research and education in an integrated environment, pursuing the latest in innovative approaches and learning. The LARC’s goal is to radically improve models of care and intervention for those with Substance Use Disorders

Coping with the Aftermath of COVID-19

The American public will face unprecedented levels of alcohol and drug addiction following the COVID-19 pandemic, if this looming crisis is not already here. People don’t know where to turn; they are isolated and do not know how/where to seek help. Unemployment and furloughs are resulting in financial burdens on top of a plummeting economy. Uninsured and limited access to addiction treatment, healthcare worker stress, family strain and feelings of helplessness in assisting family members, and uncertainty about the future all compound the problem, leading to:
  •  Anxiety  •  Insomnia  •  Isolation  •  Depression  •  PTSD  •  All of which can produce increases in alcoholism and drug addiction

After many previous disasters (e.g., the 9/11 attacks, hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the economic collapse of 2008-2010), there were documented increases in alcohol and drug abuse in the affected populations.  However, since the health and economic crises of this pandemic are unlike anything we have ever witnessed (now more than 1,000,000 documented cases of COVID-19 in the United States and more than 26 million people filing for unemployment for the first time), there is no way to accurately predict the associated increases in addiction that are sure to follow. These policy briefings describe the crisis that is coming - if it is not already here. 

Isolation and economic upheaval caused by COVID-19 are resulting in a sharp spike in mental health and addiction related crises. LARC is here to help.

Resources for dealing with addiction and stress of COVID-19

Contact Us

LSU Health Shreveport
1501 Kings Highway
Shreveport, LA 71103
(318) 813-LARC (5272)

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LARC Leadership

Executive Director

Nicholas E. Goeders, PhD

Nicholas E. Goeders, PhD

Professor and Head of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neuroscience; Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine; Executive Director of Louisiana Addiction Research Center

Clinical Research Director

James C. Patterson II, MD, PhD

James C. Patterson II, MD, PhD

Professor and Chair of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, Christus Schumpert Chair of Neurobiology

Basic Science Research Director

Kevin Murnane, PhD

Kevin Murnane, PhD

Associate Professor of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Neuroscience, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Director of Basic Science Research for Louisiana Addiction Research Center


In Memory of Dr. James Gary Booker

We extend our deepest condolences to Dr. Gary Booker’s family. He was a valued faculty member and a valued member of the LARC Board who will be missed by all.  He was especially beloved by students and residents who benefited from his outstanding teaching ability. His service in leading the emergency psychiatry team for the past seven years has touched countless lives due to his profound compassion for those suffering with mental illness.

“Dr. Booker believed in giving 110% to every patient and student garnering the respect of all who knew him. He was a good friend, colleague and an excellent clinician,” shared Dr James Patterson, Chair of the LSUHS Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, and Clinical Director of the LARC. 

To make a gift to the LSU Health Shreveport Department of Psychiatry in memory of Dr. Booker, please link to the LSUHS Foundation Here.

Featured News Story


Student working in the lab.

Louisiana Addiction Research Center (LARC)

Leading the Way in Addiction Research and Education

Group photo of LARC Board Members

Louisiana Addiction Research Center (LARC)