Multisystemic Therapy for Emerging Adults MST-EA (NIMH)

Based on Research Conducted at OSLC

This study (NIMH #R01MH108793) will evaluate the effectiveness of a comprehensive treatment for emerging adults who are justice-involved and have serious mental illness, as well as examining the mechanisms of action for such treatments.

Project Overview

MST-EA NIMH will test a treatment for serious antisocial behavior (i.e., criminal offending) and co-occurring mental illness in emerging adults. Antisocial behavior is especially high among emerging adults with mental illness; findings suggest the majority of such youth will be arrested by age 25, most with multiple arrests, and for serious charges. Thus, there is a clear public health need for effective treatments to reduce serious antisocial behavior in this population. There are no established interventions with evidence of efficacy to reduce serious antisocial behavior among emerging adults, with or without mental illness. The intervention is an adaptation of the well-established effective juvenile antisocial behavior intervention, Multisystemic Therapy (MST). MST-EA is a single source that targets the EA correlates of antisocial behavior, including gainful activity (school, work, housing, and positive relationships) and reduced substance use, in part by targeting the proximal mechanism of poor self-regulation. MST-EA also addresses these correlates through reducing mental illness symptoms. This study will evaluate MST-EA’s effectiveness and the mechanisms of action for treatments in this population. The study is being conducted in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine and the Connecticut Department of Children and Families.

Year Project Began: 2016
Funder: National Institute of Mental Health

Principal Investigator

Ashli J. Sheidow, Ph.D.

Senior Research Scientist
Oregon Social Learning Center

Active Research Projects

Primary Research and Clinical Interests

Dr. Sheidow researches treatments for mental health and substance abuse problems in adolescents and emerging adults, particularly those who have co-occurring problems. She’s also focused on effective dissemination of evidence-based practices, in particular training practices for community-based counselors.

Dr. Sheidow’s research interests have focused broadly on the development, prevention, and treatment of adolescent and young adult psychopathology and delinquency from an ecological perspective, with concentrations in co-occurring disorders, effective dissemination of evidence-based practices, and advanced quantitative methods. Her work, funded primarily by NIDA and NIMH, has included intervention development and evaluation projects, as well as dissemination and implementation research. She is on the editorial boards of the Journal of Child and Adolescent Substance Abuse and the Journal of Behavioral Health Services Research, and has led programming for national conferences on adolescent substance abuse research.