Dr. Denise Hien

Clinical Research Faculty
Director, Center of Alcohol & Substance Use Studies
Associate Dean of Academic and Research Affairs

Denise Hien, Ph.D., ABPP joined Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, as the Director for the Center of Alcohol & Substance Use Studies, and Professor in the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP) at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. Recognized as a leader in the field of post-traumatic stress and addictions, her body of work has contributed to the evidence base on effective interventions for individuals with PTSD and substance use disorders. She and her group have conduct programmatic research through single- and multi-site clinical trials across the United States in community-based substance abuse treatment settings, with continuous funding from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and National Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse (20 grants total: 6 R01, 1 multi-site) for over 20 years. She currently leads an NIDA R25 training grant for translational addiction research for racial/ethnic minority BS/MD, MA and PhD candidates in the biomedical and social sciences. She is board-certified in clinical psychology and has served as a standing and ad hoc member on NIDA, NIAAA and NIMH Institutional Review Groups and a health disparities advisory group to the Director of NIDA on Asian/Pacific Islander issues. Dr. Hien hopes to increase the center’s visibility in shaping the national conversation about traumatic stress and its’ role in the development and maintenance of alcohol and other substance use disorders.

Dr. Hien received her B.A. in Psychology from Cornell University, and her M.S., M.Phil. and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. She received her postdoctoral training in substance use research at the Division on Substance Use Disorders at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, where she has retained a longstanding appointment, now as Adjunct Senior Research Scientist. Over her career, she has served on the doctoral faculties of the Derner School of Psychology at Adelphi University, The Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and The City College of New York. Within each of these institutions, she has held numerous leadership roles in academic and research administration.

Books & Articles: 

Selected Recent Publications (out of over 85: For a more complete list, see CV and

Impact (as of February 2018)

The ISI web of science citation report: 1851 independent citing articles, average 29 per article, h-index=23; google scholar h-index=28; research gate h-index=25. The number of citations exceeds 375 for a review I co-authored in Drug and Alcohol Dependence in 2007. Other journals where I have published are also of high impact (e.g., American Journal of Psychiatry, Drug and Alcohol Dependence, Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics).

Ruglass, LM, Espinosa, A, Sheyvorkin, A, Sykes, K, Dambreville, N, Nicholson, R, & Hien, DA. (2017). Direct and indirect effects of cumulative trauma, PTSD, and substance use disorder on the probability of arrest among lower income African American and Latina women, Race and Justice. Advance online publication. (E-pub 2016 June 30).

Papini, S., Ruglass, L. M., Lopez-Castro, T., Powers, M. B., Smits, J. A. J., Hien, DA. (2017). Chronic cannabis use is associated with impaired fear extinction in humans. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 126 (1), 117-124. (E-pub 2016 Nov 3).

Ruglass, LM, Shevorykin, A, Radoncic, V, Galatzer-Levy, I, Zumberg, K, Smith, P & Hien, DA. (2017). Impact of cannabis use on PTSD + SUD outcomes, Journal of Clinical Medicine. 6(2), 14. (E-pub 2017 Feb 7).

Ruglass, LM, Papini, S, Lopez-Castro, T, Back, S, Killeen, T & Hien, DA. (2017). Concurrent treatment with prolonged exposure for co-occurring posttraumatic stress disorder and substance use disorders: A randomized clinical trial, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. 86:150–161 (doi: 10.1159/000462977).

Rubin, M, Hien, DA, Dipanjana, D, & Melara, R. (2017). The role of spontaneous eye blinks in Post-traumatic Stress Disorder. Brain Sciences, 7(2). (doi:10.3390/brainsci7020016) PMID 28165364.

Campbell, ANC., Back, SE, Ostroff, JS, Hien, DA., Gourevitch, M, Sheffer, C, Brady, KT, Hanley, K, Bereket, S, & Book, S. (2017). Addiction Research Training Programs: Four Case Studies and Recommendations for Evaluation. Journal of Academic Medicine, 11(5), 333-338 (doi: 10.1097/ADM.0000000000000328).

Ruglass, LM, Shevorkyin, A, Brezing, C, Hu, M & Hien, DA. (2017). Demographic and clinical characteristics of treatment-seeking women with PTSD and concurrent cannabis and cocaine use disorders. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 80, 45-51. (doi:10.1016/j.jsat.2017.06.007), PMID 28755772.

Hien, DA, Lopez-Castro, T, Papini, S, Gorman, B. & Ruglass, LM. (2017). Emotion dysregulation moderates the effect of cognitive behavior therapy with prolonged exposure for co-occurring PTSD and substance use disorders. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 52, 53-61.

Mihoko, M., Saraiya, T., Lee, C., Meghania, O., Hien, DA., & Hahm, H. (2018). The relationship between intimate partner violence and suicidal ideation among young Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese American women, Women and Therapy. 0:0, pp. 1-17 (doi:10.1080/02703149.2018.1430381).

Chao, T, Radoncic, V, Hien, DA, Bedi, G & Haney, M. (2018). Stress responding in cannabis smokers as a function of trauma exposure, sex, and relapse in the human laboratory. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 185, 23-32. (doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2017.11.021).

Melara, R, Ruglass, LM, Fertuck, E & Hien, DA. (2018). Regulation of threat in post-traumatic stress disorder: Associations between inhibitory control and dissociative symptoms. Biological Psychology, 133, 89-98. (doi: 10.1016/j.biopsycho.2018.01.017).

Melara, R, Singh, S, Hien, DA. (2018). Neural and behavioral correlates of attentional inhibition training and perceptual discrimination training in a visual flanker task. Frontiers in Neuroscience. (doi:10.3389/fnhum.2018.00191).

Hahm, HC, Chang, ST, Tong, HQ, Meneses, MA, Yuzbasioglu, RF, & Hien, DA. (in press). Development and implementation of a culturally competent intervention targeting the mental and sexual health of Asian American young women: A Stage 1 trial of the AWARE intervention, Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology.

Papini, SP, Rubin, M, Powers, MB, Smits, JA, Hien, DA. (in press). Pretreatment PTSD symptom network metrics predict symptom influence in the overall treatment response. Journal of Traumatic Stress.

Research Interests

Effects of trauma exposures and addiction on the mind and body; intergenerational trauma and the impact of parental history on child functioning; the role of threat-related cognitive processing in the development and maintenance of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and associated interpersonal impairments; efficacy of treatment interventions for co-occurring PTSD and addiction; psychophysiological (EEG) predictors of social emotions related to trauma and PTSD; multicultural/diversity barriers in mentoring in social sciences.

Board Certification in Clinical Psychology (ABPP), 25 years in private practice working with traumatic stress and addiction-related disorders, evidence-based assessment and treatment of PTSD and SUD, clinical supervisor and mentor, consulting for legal cases on physical and sexual abuse in the women’s prison population by prison guards. 

Grants and Awards

Active Support (see CV for past support):

2013-2019 Principal Investigator, Translational Research Training in Addictions at City College and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons (TRACC) (Co-I’s: Frances R. Levin, M.D., Robert Melara, Ph.D., Lesia Ruglass, Ph.D., Mauricio Trevisan, M.D.), National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH) R25, Total Direct and Indirect Costs 1.9 Million.

2014-2019 Co-Investigator, “TREND Partnership: Tobacco Research and Education to Eliminate Disparities” (PI: Christine Sheffer, Ph.D.), National Cancer Institute, P20, Total Direct and Indirect Costs $4.5 Million.

2016-2019 Principal Investigator, “Derner Hempstead Training Clinic and Outcomes” (Co-PI: Jonathan Jackson, Ph.D.), FAR Fund, Total Direct and Indirect Costs $153,000.

2017-2022 Co-Investigator, “Using the Strategic Prevention Framework to Reduce and Prevent Underage Drinking and Drug Use” (PI-Robert Melara, Ph.D.) New York State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services, Total and Direct Costs, $500,000.

2017-2022 Consultant, “Global Evaluation & Applied Research Solutions (GEARS) Inc.” (PI: Diane Roberts, MA, President). Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, IDIQ Grant.

2018-2022 Principal Investigator, “Meta-Analysis with Individual Patient Data for PTSD and Alcohol Use Disorders” (MPI: Antonio Morgan-Lopez, Ph.D.), National Institute on Alcoholism and Alcohol Abuse (NIH) R01, Total Direct and Indirect Costs $2.75 Million.

2018-2019 Principal Investigator, “Developing a trauma-informed technology based psychosocial adjunct to MAT treatment for female opioid users in primary care: A formative study,” Institute of Health Policy, Office of Research and Economic Development, Rutgers University Institutional Research Grant, Total Direct and Indirect Costs, $20,000.

2018-2019 Principal Investigator, “Trauma-related neurobiological predictors of adverse child outcomes: Secondary analysis of the health brain network database,” Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology, Collaborative Initiative Grant, Total Direct and Indirect Costs, $10,000.