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CDAP > Basic Science Researchers > Dr. William (Tripp) C. Griffin, III
Dr. William (Tripp) C. Griffin, III

Dr. Tripp Griffin

Research Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences



Research Interests

Dr. Griffin's research interests include understanding the mechanisms that underlie the urge to drink and the maintenance of alcohol drinking. Areas of active investigation consist of examining the neurobiological adaptations in glutamatergic and dopaminergic signaling systems in the nucleus accumbens and dorsolateral striatum which are brain regions that are known to be involved in regulating alcohol consumption. An emerging area of Dr. Griffin's research is examining the interactive effects of alcohol with caffeine on behavior and neurotransmission in these same brain regions. .


University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NCB.S.  1993  Biology
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NCB.S.1996Pharmacy
SE Regional Medical Center, Lumberton, NCResidency1997Pharmacy
West Virginia University, Morgantown, WVPh.D.2001Pharmacology
Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, SCPostdoctoral2008Addiction Biology

Professional Experience

1996-1997ASHP Pharmacy Practice Resident, Southeastern Regional Medical Center, Lumberton, NC
1997-2001Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, West Virginia University School of Medicine, Morgantown, WV
2001-2005Post-Doctoral Fellow, Center for Drug and Alcohol Programs, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, MUSC, Charleston, SC
2006-2008Post-Doctoral Fellow, Charleston Alcohol Research Center, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, MUSC, Charleston, SC
2008-presentResearch Assistant Professor, Center for Drug and Alcohol Problems, Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences, MUSC, Charleston, SC

Awards and Honors

1992-1996University of North Carolina Dean’s List
1994Summer Research Assistantship, Cancer Education Program, UNC Hospitals
1999-2000WVU School of Medicine (SoM) Graduate Stipend
1999-2001West Virginia University (WVU) Doctoral Student Travel Awards
Member, Society for Neuroscience
2000International Behavioral Neuroscience Society Travel Award
2000WVU SoM Academic Achievement Award (Highest GPA)
2005Research Society on Alcoholism Junior Investigator Award
Member, Research Society on Alcoholism


1996-presentNC Registered Pharmacist License #13482
2002-presentSC Registered Pharmacist License #010599

Recent Publications

Griffin WC, 3rd, Nguyen SA, Deleon CP & Middaugh LD. Effects of vigabatrin, an irreversible GABA transaminase inhibitor, on ethanol reinforcement and ethanol discriminative stimuli in mice. Behavioural Pharmacology 23(2):178-190, 2012. PMCID: 3296837

Lopez MF, Griffin WC, 3rd, Melendez RI & Becker HC. Repeated cycles of chronic intermittent ethanol exposure leads to the development of tolerance to aversive effects of ethanol in C57BL/6J mice. Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research 36(7):1180-1187, 2012. PMCID: 3527904

Griffin WC, 3rd. Commentary on Marczinski and colleagues: Mixing an energy drink with an alcoholic beverage increases motivation for more alcohol in college students. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research 37(2):188-190, 2013.

Griffin WC, 3rd, McGovern RW, Bell GH, Randall PK, Middaugh LD & Patrick KS. Interactive effects of methylphenidate and alcohol on discrimination, conditioned place preference and motor coordination in C57BL/6J mice. Psychopharmacology (Berl) 225(3):613-625, 2013. PMCID: 3547134

Hilbert ML, May CE & Griffin WC, 3rd. Conditioned reinforcement and locomotor activating effects of caffeine and ethanol combinations in mice. Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior 110C:168-173, 2013.

Padula AE, McGuier NS, Griffin WC, 3rd, Lopez MF, Becker HC & Mulholland PJ. Novel anticonvulsants for reducing alcohol consumption:  A review of evidence from preclinical rodent drinking models. Open Access Alcohol Feb 01: 1(1):2, 2013. PMCID: -Publicly available at


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