The mission of the Analgesic, Anesthetic, and Addiction Clinical Trial Translations, Innovations, Opportunities, and Networks (ACTTION) public-private partnership with the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is to identify, prioritize, sponsor, coordinate, and promote innovative activities — with a special interest in optimizing clinical trials — that will expedite the discovery and development of improved analgesic, anesthetic, and addiction treatments for the benefit of the public health.

ACTTION is a multi-year, multi-phase initiative that is closely aligned with the FDA's Critical Path Initiative. This public-private partnership has been designed to streamline the discovery and development process for new analgesic, anesthetic, and addiction medications and to more generally accelerate the development of treatments with improved efficacy and safety.

The key objectives of ACTTION involve initiating and supporting strategic collaborations among a broad spectrum of stakeholders — including, but not limited to, academia, the FDA and other government agencies, industry, professional organizations, patient advocacy groups, foundations, and philanthropic organizations — with the goals of sharing data and innovative thinking about the development of novel therapeutics. These strategic collaborations involve a wide range of research projects and other activities, for example, scientific workshops, consensus meetings, and in-depth analyses of clinical trial data to determine the effects of research methods on study assay sensitivity and efficiency.

ACTTION is intended to have benefits that are international in scope. To represent the bridges that ACTTION is establishing among its diverse stakeholders, this website is illustrated with watermarks of two bridges that share the distinction of connecting different continents. Directly below is the First Bosphorus Bridge in Istanbul, Turkey, which connects Europe and Asia; on the Contact Us webpage is the Leifur Eiriksson Bridge in Iceland's Reykjanes peninsula, which spans a rift valley between the North American and European continental plates.


January 22, 2015: New ACTTION Working Group

The Public Relations and Other Communication and Education Strategies (PROCESS) Working Group will be Co-Chaired by Dr. Robert Kerns and Christin Veasley, who are both members of ACTTION’s Executive Committee. This Working Group will develop a range of initiatives designed to disseminate information about ACTTION’s multiple activities – such as research studies, diagnostic criteria, and development of novel outcome measures – to a range of stakeholders, including researchers, clinicians, students and trainees, persons with pain, and the general public.

January 22, 2015: Robert Dworkin, PhD, to Receive AAN’s Mitchell B. Max Award for Neuropathic Pain

ACTTION’s Director, Robert Dworkin, PhD, will receive the 2015 Mitchell B. Max Award for Neuropathic Pain from the American Academy of Neurology in recognition of his outstanding achievements in neuropathic pain during AAN’s annual meeting (April 18-25, Washington, DC). Dr. Dworkin’s research has focused on the treatment and prevention of chronic neuropathic pain, especially herpes zoster and postherpetic neuralgia, and on identifying modifiable characteristics of analgesic clinical trials that can improve their assay sensitivity. Dr. Mitchell Max was a renowned neurologist and pain researcher who made groundbreaking contributions to pain treatment and the design of analgesic clinical trials, including demonstrating that the analgesic effects of tricyclic antidepressants were independent of their antidepressant effects, proposing the first roadmap for the development of mechanism-based pain treatments and conducting clinical trials designed with that objective, and developing research methods to address the critical role of variability in analgesic treatment response. He was a very active and valued participant in IMMPACT meetings, and were it not for his untimely death, we are confident he would have played an important role in ACTTION.

December 30, 2014: ACTTION Presentation at the International Anesthesia Research Society

ACTTION will be represented at the Annual Meeting of the International Anesthesia Research Society, being held in Honolulu from March 21-24, 2015. Mark Williams, MBBS, and colleagues will be presenting a poster on adverse event reporting in clinical trials of interventional pain treatments. The complete reference for the presentation is: Williams MR, Smith SM, Gilron I, Turk DC, Dworkin RH. Examining adverse event reporting in clinical trials of interventional pain treatments: An ACTTION systematic review. International Anesthesia Research Society annual meeting, Honolulu, March 23, 2015.

December 2, 2014: ACTTION Submits Letter of Intent to FDA for QUALITE-Pain

ACTTION has been assigned a Drug Development Tool number by FDA and submitted a Letter of Intent to FDA to begin development of the “QUALIfied for Therapeutic Evaluations of Pain” (QUALITE-Pain) instrument and then apply for its qualification as a Clinical Outcome Assessment. ACTTION is eagerly waiting for the FDA’s response and looks forward to developing an evidence-based and state-of-the-art approach for the assessment of pain intensity.