September 2008
Researchers in optics, genetics, and bioengineering have developed a powerful tool for visualizing cells deep in the brain and a remote control for activating brain cells.

Describes new tools under development, including one to visualize cells deep in the brain and another one that remotely activates brain cells.

September 2008
Results point to importance of memory in addiction.

Presents research findings linking 89 genes to drug abuse and dependence, found using genome-wide association studies, a new technique for identifying genes.

June 2008

Reports on research showing that newborns whose mothers abused methamphetamine during pregnancy showed lower rates of fetal growth as compared with unexposed newborns.

June 2008
Toluene abuse can harm the nervous system and body, yet scientists know relatively little about its specific actions.

Reports on evidence that toluene abuse can harm the nervous system and body, although scientists know relatively little about its specific actions.

June 2008
A South American caterpillar inspired a successful 10-year quest to desensitize the dopamine transporter to the drug.

Reports on a study involving researchers who successfully desensitized mice to cocaine by genetically altering their dopamine transporters.

June 2008
Morphine sets off a chain of biological events that stifles the immune response.

Reports on scientists who pinpointed the biochemical trigger from morphine that sets off a chain reaction that inhibits an immune cell that is key in fighting viruses and cancer.

March 2008

Describes a study showing that cocaine, which increases dopamine levels, also can tap into an intracellular dopamine reserve pool.

March 2008
A comparison of genetic markers of opioid abusers and their relatives brings scientists closer to identifying those that contribute to abuse and dependence.

Describes the work of researchers who have found a statistical link between one region on chromosome 17 and an increased risk of opioid dependence.

March 2008

Describes a new chemical tracer that binds specifically to cannabinoid receptors making it potentially useful in future research to clarify the relationship between the receptors and drug abuse.

March 2008
Understanding the receptor composition of circuits governing pleasure and motivation could help fine-tune drug treatment.

Reports on research showing that the neurons that deliver dopamine to two regions of the brain's mesolimbic reward system respond differently to opioids, an important finding for drug treatment research.

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