NIH Study: MABT for Opioid Use Disorder [Research Perch]

Posted:Tuesday, April 11, 2023

Mindful Awareness in Body-oriented Therapy (MABT) combines manual, mindfulness and psycho-educational approaches to teach interoceptive awareness and related self-care skills. Learn more about MABT and an NIH-funded study looking at how it can be used to combat the opioid epidemic, as MTF President Adrienne Asta interviews researcher Cynthia Price and Megan Sherman, one of the LMT research interventionists on the project. Additional resources below video.

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Learn more about MABT here: Center for Mindful Body-Awareness

More about the NIH-funded Study: MABT for Opioid Use Disorder Abstract Overview

Initial Pilot Study Findings: Pilot Study: MABT for Opiod Use Disorder

Cynthia Price is a Research Professor at the University of Washington School of Nursing.  She got her massage therapy training in 1981, and worked as a massage therapist for 20 years in private practice, during which time she got her MA in Counseling/Psychology.  She went on to get her PhD in Nursing Science in order to study the approach she’d developed called Mindful Awareness in Body-oriented Therapy or MABT.  MABT is designed to develop and increase capacity for interoceptive awareness in order to facilitate self-care and emotion regulation.  Cynthia’s research is focused in community clinics, and the majority has been with people in treatment for substance use disorder – many of whom have a history of significant interpersonal trauma and/or chronic pain.  Cynthia is also the Director of the Center for Mindful Body Awareness, through which she and her colleagues offer trainings to bodyworkers and other therapists and health care providers in the delivery of MABT.


Megan Sherman is a massage therapist and has been in private practice since 2003.  She has a MA in Psychology in Education: Spirituality, Mind, and Body.  Megan was hired two years ago to work on a study of MABT for people in medication treatment for opioid use disorder and trained in MABT at that time. She also assists with MABT trainings through the Center for Mindful Body Awareness.