Dr Marel is a Research Fellow at the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, and a member of the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Mental Health and Substance Use (CREMS). She completed her PhD through the University of New South Wales in 2011, examining the regulatory approaches to volatile substance misuse in the Alice Springs Town Camps, Northern Territory. Prior to this Dr Marel conducted research examining the effect of alcohol in moderating or exacerbating deviant behaviour among young adult males. Her research interests focus on the treatment and management of comorbid mental health and substance use disorders, and in her short career, Dr Marel has coordinated three large research projects focusing on these co-occurring disorders.
Most recently, Dr Marel has been coordinating a large scale NHMRC funded 11-year longitudinal study examining the long-term trajectories of heroin dependence and comorbid mental health disorders. The analysis of the 11-year follow-up data is currently underway, and will be used to examine the long-term trajectories of heroin dependence and comorbid mental health disorders. Prior to this, Christina coordinated the development of a suite of information booklets on co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders for clinicians and clients of substance use treatment services. More than 100,000 copies of these resources were disseminated to substance use and mental health treatment services across Australia. Building on these important resources, she is currently leading the revision of the National Comorbidity Guidelines on the management and treatment of comorbid mental health and substance use conditions in alcohol and other drug treatment settings.