A headshot photo of Laura R. Lander.

Laura R. Lander, MSW, LICSW

Associate Professor/ Section Chief - Social work

Contact Information

PO Box 9137
930 Chestnut Ridge Road
Morgantown, WV 26505


  • Department of Behavioral Medicine & Psychiatry
  • Department of Neuroscience
  • Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute

Graduate Training

  • MSW, Columbia University, 1994

Research Interests

Ms. Lander’s primary research focus is clinical translational research in the area of opioid use disorders (OUD) and developing effective ways to measure and improve clinical outcomes. She is currently an Associate Professor in the West Virginia University (WVU) School of Medicine, with a dual appointment in the Department of Behavioral Medicine and Psychiatry and Department of Neuroscience. Ms. Lander is recognized as a national expert on medication-assisted treatment (MAT) for OUD and served on the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Committee on MAT for OUD from 10/2018-3/2019.  She is a Co-Investigator in the National Institute on Drug Abuse Clinical Trials Network in the newly formed Appalachian Node.  Her additional research in the last 15 years has primarily focused on developing effective psychosocial interventions for the treatment of substance use disorders among both men and women, pregnant women, and adolescents. She has incorporated the use of genetics, neuroimaging and adjunctive treatments such as yoga and mindfulness-based relapse prevention to measure and improve treatment effectiveness.  The treatment of pregnant women with OUD and assessment of neonatal outcomes is also an area of clinical and research focus. She is currently Co-Investigator on several SAMHSA State Opioid Response grants including MAT expansion in WV, initiation of buprenorphine in the ED using Peer Recovery Coach Support and is a member of the Addictions Center of Excellence at WVU. In addition, she has over 25 years of clinical experience in the field of mental health and substance abuse and has worked to develop a nationally recognized innovative model of group-based MAT with buprenorphine for individuals with OUD, and an integrated MAT Centering model specifically for the treatment of pregnant and post-partum women. From this clinical experience, she has developed a deep understanding of the challenges faced by patients with substance use disorders and their families and the barriers to treatment.  Through her research efforts, she strives to develop ways to develop evidence-based treatments for patients struggling with substance use disorders.

Recent Publications

Winstanley EL, Mahoney JJ, Lander LR, Berry JH, Marshalek P, Zheng W, Haut MW. (2020). Something to Despair: Gender differences in adverse childhood experiences among rural patients. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 116; 1-7.  Dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsat.2020.108056

Lander LR, Zheng W, Hustead J, Mahoney JJ, Berry JH, Marshalek P, Winstanley EL. (2020). Long-term treatment retention in West Virginia’s Comprehensive Opioid Addictions Treatment Program. Journal of the Neurological Sciences, Vol 411, Article 116712. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jns.2020.116712

Mahoney JJ, Marshalek PJ, Rezai AR, Lander LR, Berry, JH, Haut MW. A Case Report Illustration the Effects of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation on Cue-Induced Craving in an Individual with Opioid and Cocaine Use Disorder.  Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology. October 2019. Dx.doi.org/10.1037/pha0000289

Winstanley EL, Lander LR, Berry JH, Mahoney JJ, Zhang W, Herschler J, Marshalek P, Sayres S, Mason J, Haut MW. West Virginia’s model of buprenorphine expansion: Preliminary results. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, May 2019. doi.org/101016/j.jsat.2019.05.005

Shane W. Kaski, BS; Stephan Brooks, MPH; Sijin Wen, PhD; Marc W. Haut, PhD;

David P. Siderovski, PhD; Laura R. Lander, MSW; Vincent Setola, PhD.  Four single nucleotide polymorphisms in genes involved in neuronal signaling are associated with Opioid Use Disorder in West Virginia, Journal of Opioid Management. 2019; 15(2). DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5055/jom.2019.0491

Zullig, Keith J., Lander, Laura R., Tuscano, Meghan, Hobbs, Gerry R., & Faulkenberry, Laurel. (2018). Incorporating Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention into outpatient therapy for treatment of opioid use disorder with medication-assisted treatment. Annals of Community Medicine & Practice Volume 4, Issue 1: 1032. https://www.jscimedcentral.com/CommunityMedicine/communitymedicine-4-1032.pdf

Nguyen L, Lander LR, O'Grady KE, Marshalek PJ, Schmidt A, Kelly AK, Jones HE. Treating women with opioid use disorder during pregnancy in Appalachia: Initial neonatal outcomes following buprenorphine + naloxone exposure. Am J Addict. 2018 Mar;27(2):92-96. doi: 10.1111/ajad.12687. Epub 2018 Feb 23. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29473258

Zheng, W., Nickasch, M., Lander, L., Wen, S., Xiao, M., Marshalek, P., Dix, E, Sullivan, C. (2017). Treatment Outcome Comparison between Telepsychiatry and Face-to-face Buprenorphine Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) for Opioid Use Disorder: A 2-Year Retrospective Data Analysis. Journal of Addiction Medicine, 11(2), 138–144. http://doi.org/10.1097/ADM.0000000000000287

Laura Lander, Kathleen Chiasson-Downs, Michael Andrew, Gerald Rader, Sheena Dohar, and Kimberly Waibogha, Yoga as an Adjunctive Intervention to Medication-Assisted Treatment  with Buprenorphine+Naloxone, Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy 2017, 8:6, DOI: 10.4172/2155-6105.1000354

Keith J. Zullig ,Laura R. Lander, Samantha Sloan, Michael R. Brumage, Gerry R. Hobbs, Laurel Faulkenberry., Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention with Individuals Receiving Medication-Assisted Outpatient Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder, Mindfulness,  April 2018, Volume 9, Issue 2, pp 423–429, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12671-017-0784-0

Zheng, Wanhong, Nickasch, Michael, Lander, Laura, Wen, Sijin, Xiao, Minchan, Marshalek, Patrick, Dix, Ebony, Sullivan, Carl. Treatment Outcome Comparison between Telepsychiatry and Face-to-face Buprenorphine Medication-assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder: A 2-Year Retrospective Data Analysis. Journal of Addiction Medicine. 11(2):138-144, March/April 2017. DOI: 10.1097/ADM.0000000000000287

Zullig, K, Lander, L, Sloan, S, Brummage, M, Hobbs, G, Faulkenberry, L. Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention with Individuals Receiving Medication-Assisted Outpatient Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder, Mindfulness. 8/2017. DOI 10.1007/s12671-017-0784-0

Lander, L & Marshalek, P. Opioid Use Disorder Among Pregnant Women: effective substance abuse treatment considerations. Paradigm. 21(4) 2017, 20-22.

Stabler ME, Long DL, Chertok IR, Giacobbi PR Jr, Pilkerton C, Lander LR. Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome in West Virginia Substate Regions, 2007-2013. The Journal of Rural Health, 2016 Feb, doi 10.1111/jrh. 12174 

Zheng WH, Wakim RJ, Geary RC, Lander LR, Wen SJ, Xiao MC and Sullivan CR. Self-reported Sleep Improvement in Buprenorphine MAT (Medication Assisted Treatment) Population. Austin Journal of Drug Abuse and Addiction - Vol.3, Issue 1 -2016; 3 (1): 1009.

Stabler M, Gurka K, Lander L. Association between Childhood Residential Mobility and Non-Medical Use of Prescription Drugs among American Youth, submitted to Maternal and Child Health Journal, Aug, 2014.

Lander L, Gurka K, Marshalek P, Riffon M, Sullivan R. Treatment of Pregnant Women With Opioid Use Disorders on Buprenorphine in Pregnancy-Only vs. Mixed-Gender Groups, submitted to SW Research, (2015) 39 (4): 235-244. 

Byrne M & Lander L. (2014) Chapter 4: Socio-environmental Aspects of substance Use Disorders.  In A. Douaihy & D. Daley (Eds), Substance Use Disorders (Pittsburgh Pocket Psychiatry Series). New York: Oxford University Press.

Lander L, Marshalek P, Yitayew M, Ford D, Sullivan C, Gurka K. (2013)  Rural Healthcare Disparities: Challenges and Solutions for the Pregnant Opioid-dependent Population.  West Virginia Medical Journal Accepted for publication July 2013. 

Shockey, A, Wilson CS, Lander L, Baretto, G, Szklarz, G, VanVoorhis, G, Minardi, J. (2013).  The effect of rural upbringing and education on the intent of health professional students to work in rural settings.  International Journal of Medical Education Volume 4, 18-25.

White RJ, Zullig KJ, Lander L, Shockley C, Pack RP, Sullivan C. (2012). The West Virginia Prescription Drug Abuse Quitline: Challenges and Lessons Learned from Running a Remote Quitline, Health Promotion Practice Volume 13(1), 81-89.