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Rats Reared Alone Show ADHD Signs

Basic Science, Published December 2009

Describes an animal study showing that rats raised in isolation may prove useful in future studies exploring the neurobiology that links impulsivity and vulnerability to addiction.

Rare Glutamate Receptor Proliferates After Cocaine Withdrawal

Basic Science, Published December 2009
Molecular change in rat brains parallels increase in drug-seeking behavior.

Reports findings that a rare neuroreceptor may be linked to the intensive cravings cocaine abusers experience during their first weeks of abstinence.

Studies Link Family of Genes to Nicotine Addiction

Basic Science, Published December 2009
Genes for protein constituents of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors influence early smoking responses and the likelihood of nicotine dependence.

Reports study results suggesting that genes for several acetylcholine receptor proteins influence early smoking responses and the likelihood of nicotine dependence.

Methamphetamine Turns Helper Cells Into Destroyers

Basic Science, Published November 2009

Describes research providing evidence that chronic methamphetamine abuse is associated with increased microglial cell activity in the brain leading to neurodegeneration.

Nicotine Boosts Mood, Brain Dopamine Levels

Basic Science, Published November 2009

Highlights findings from a study showing that nicotine triggers a surge in levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine in the brain's main reward area for cigarette smokers.

Extended Cocaine Exposure Impairs Cognitive Function in Rats

Basic Science, Published November 2009
Declines in a dopamine receptor parallel deficits in vigilance and mental flexibility.

Reports an animal study presenting evidence that cocaine causes cognitive deficits that can persist well into abstinence.

Methamphetamine Abuse Alters Response to Facial Cues

Basic Science, Published October 2009

Highlights research showing methamphetamine abusers may have more difficulty than nonabusers in responding with empathy and self-control to people who are experiencing intense emotions.

Sensory Aspects of Smoking May Counter Bad Mood, Craving

Basic Science, Published October 2009

Describes study findings revealing that the act of smoking, apart from actual or expected nicotine delivery, may soothe a smoker's negative mood.

Drug Cues Outside Awareness Rapidly Trigger Brain's Emotion Centers

Basic Science, Published October 2009

Describes research showing that cocaine abusers appear to have a rapid neural response to reward cues outside of their awareness, possibly signifying vulnerability to relapse.

Receptor Complexes Link Dopamine to Long-Term Neuronal Effects

Basic Science, Published October 2009
Discovery may open a new window on substance abuse and potential therapies.

Reports on a discovery of previously unrecognized dopamine receptors in the brain that when triggered by drug abuse lead to potentially long-term neuronal effects.

Manic Mice Show Heightened Sensitivity to Rewards

Basic Science, Published October 2009
Manipulation of a gene produces mice with behaviors characteristic of bipolar disorder and signs of drug abuse vulnerability.

Reports on an animal study suggesting that the manic stage of bipolar disorder promotes signs of drug abuse vulnerability by enhancing sensitivity to rewards, both natural and drug-related.

Ethnic Groups Have Contrasting Genetic Risks for Nicotine Addiction

Basic Science, Published October 2009
Differences and similarities show up in genetic profiles of African-Americans and European-Americans who are heavy smokers.

Describes research exploring differences and similarities in the genetic profiles of African-Americans and European-Americans who are heavy smokers.

New Tracer for Nicotinic Receptors Promises Improved Specificity

Basic Science, Published April 2009

Reports on NIDA researchers who developed a new tracer compound that binds readily to nicotine receptors and enhances positron emission tomography images.

Prenatal Nicotine Exposure May Damage Receptors That Influence Auditory Processing

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Tests correlate biochemical abnormality with deficits in rats' responses to sounds.

Reports on a series of animal experiments indicating that nicotine exposure during prenatal fetal development damages a set of receptors in the brain's auditory processing center.

Damage to Brain Area May Immediately Halt Cigarette Addiction

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Patients with injury to the insula lost the urge to smoke.

Describes a study among people who had sustained brain injuries to investigate whether certain damaged areas of the brain are associated with the ability to quit smoking.

Brain Proteins Differ in Cocaine-Overdose Victims

Basic Science, Published December 2008

Describes research findings showing differences in protein concentrations in the brain pleasure centers of people who died from cocaine overdose as compared with those who did not abuse the drug.

Long-Term Cocaine Self-Administration Depresses Brain Activity

Basic Science, Published December 2008
Neural activity of monkeys diminishes in regions linked with cognition and emotion.

Discusses research exploring how widespread the reduction of neural activity is in the brain with chronic exposure to cocaine.

Imaging Studies Elucidate Neurobiology of Cigarette Craving

Basic Science, Published December 2008
Researchers observe brain circuit activation, rapid receptor occupation.

Reports on three separate imaging studies illuminating the neurobiology of cigarette craving.

New Technique Links 89 Genes to Drug Dependence

Basic Science, Published 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.

Optical Technologies Expand Vistas Into the Brain

Basic Science, Published 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.

Immune System Plays Unexpected Role in Brain Development

Basic Science, Published September 2008
In adulthood, however, the immune complement cascade may contribute to neurodegenerative disease.

Describes research findings demonstrating that the immune system participates in the shaping of brain circuits during a child's development, a finding that may shed light on the origins of neurodegenerative diseases.

Methamphetamine Restricts Fetal Growth, Increases Lethargy in Newborns

Basic Science, Published 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.

Morphine-Induced Immunosuppression, From Brain to Spleen

Basic Science, Published 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.

Mice With Genetic Alteration Eschew Cocaine

Basic Science, Published 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.

Animal Studies Elaborate Toluene's Effects

Basic Science, Published 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.

Long-Term Cocaine Abuse Linked With Impaired Heart Function

Basic Science, Published March 2008

Summarizes research on the effects of long-term regular cocaine abuse on the cardiovascular system in African Americans.

Exposure to Morphine During Early Adolescence Sensitizes Rats as Adults

Basic Science, Published October 2007

Presents highlights of a study indicating that exposure to morphine during adolescence may increase sensitivity to the drug during adulthood.

Controlling College Students' ADHD Symptoms May Protect Them Against Substance Abuse

Prevention, Published October 2007

Reports data on the prevalence of substance use among college students with ADHD, comparing those who received ADHD treatment with those who did not.

Tracing NET

Basic Science, Published October 2007

Describes research that has led to the development of a new tool, a new radiotracer, for studying the neurobiology of depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and stimulant abuse.

Among Young Attendees at STD Clinics, Substance Abusers Report More Risky Sexual Behavior

Public Health, Published October 2007

Highlights data on the risky sexual behaviors of patients at a sexually transmitted disease clinic who had a substance abuse disorder as compared to those without a substance abuse disorder.

NIDA's Newest Division Mines Clinical Applications From Basic Research

NIDA @ Work, Published October 2007
NIDA's Division of Clinical Neuroscience and Behavioral Research

Describes the role of the Division of Clinical Neuroscience and Behavioral Research in NIDA’s drug abuse and addiction research plan.

Neuropeptide Promotes Drug-Seeking and Craving in Rats

Basic Science, Published October 2007
Orexin emerges as a link in the chain of brain mechanisms regulating appetite for rewards.

Reports on two studies indicating that orexin, a neuropeptide that stimulates eating and regulates wakefulness, also fosters animals' drug seeking and craving responses to drugs.

Gene Experiment Confirms a Suspected Cocaine Action

Basic Science, Published October 2007
Building on knowledge from developmental and cancer biology, addiction researchers are learning how acute and chronic cocaine exposure regulates certain genes.

Reports on the work of addiction researchers who are learning how acute and chronic cocaine exposure regulates certain genes, based on knowledge from developmental and cancer biology.

Endorphin Derivative Inhibits Reward From Morphine and Nicotine in Rats

Treatment, Published October 2007
Recent studies suggest therapeutic potential for glycyl-glutamine in opiate and nicotine addiction.

Describes research investigating a naturally occurring brain chemical that shows early promise as a treatment for addiction in animal studies.

NIDA Will Contribute to Obesity Research

Director's Perspective, Published October 2007

Describes an NIH-wide obesity task force and research plan and explores some of the links between addiction and compulsive eating.

Adolescent Inhalant Use Is Stable Overall, but Rising Among Girls

Public Health, Published October 2007

Reports patterns and trends in inhalant use among adolescents based on an analysis of data from a 2002-2005 national survey on drug use and health.

Scientists Pinpoint Brain's Sweet Tooth

Basic Science, Published April 2007

Reports on research that successfully traced rats’ liking for sweets to a 1-cubic millimeter site in the medial shell of the nucleus accumbens in the brain.

Interim Methadone Raises Odds of Enrolling in Comprehensive Treatment

Published April 2007
Patients reduced heroin abuse and criminal activity while awaiting admission to a treatment program.

Reports on a study to investigate the use of methadone maintenance for heroin addicts wait-listed for a treatment program to encourage their likelihood to enroll in the program.

Genes and Smoking

Director's Perspective, Published April 2007

Reports on the research underway to identify gene variations associated with nicotine addiction and the interaction of genetic makeup, experiences, and surroundings to addiction.

NIDA Investigator Receives 2006 Waletzky Memorial Award

Bulletin Board, Published April 2007

Announces the recipient of a 2006 award for innovation in research on drug addiction and alcoholism, Dr. Yavin Shaham, and describes his research which focused on the stress-induced drug use relapse.

Meeting Reviews Progress On Prescription Opioid Misuse

Bulletin Board, Published April 2007

Describes a meeting of researchers and clinicians who gathered to discuss the challenges in balancing appropriate pain treatment with efforts to minimize prescription opioid misuse.

Brain Changes Accompany Cocaine Withdrawal

Basic Science, Published February 2007

Summarizes an animal study of the neural changes in the amygdala portion of the brain that occur as a result of cocaine exposure followed by withdrawal of the drug.

How Drug Abuse Affects the Brain and Alters Behavior Are Key Questions Driving Division's Work

NIDA @ Work, Published February 2007

Discusses the work of NIDA’s Division of Basic Neuroscience and Behavioral Research, the Institute’s locus for studies into the fundamental brain mechanisms underlying drug abuse and addiction.

Nicotine Alters the Developing Rat Brain

Basic Science, Published February 2007
Exposure to the drug during gestation or adolescence may cause lasting alterations in reward and motivation circuits.

Describes animal studies that suggested exposure to the drug during gestation or adolescence may cause lasting alterations in reward and motivation circuits.

Addiction and Co-Occurring Mental Disorders

Director's Perspective, Published February 2007

Presents an overview of the research underway to investigate medication and behavioral therapies for co-occurring disorders.

Cocaine Craving Activates Brain Reward Structures; Cocaine "High" Dampens Them

Basic Science, Published February 2007
A study documented changing emotional and neurobiological responses to cocaine with successive doses during a single session of drug taking.

Reports on a study that documenting changing emotional and neurobiological responses to cocaine with successive doses during a single session of drug taking.

Journal Highlights Opportunities in Hispanic Drug Abuse Research

Bulletin Board, Published February 2007

Reviews a journal supplement that compiles information on drug abuse research in the Hispanic population.

Videos Help Treat Deaf People

Bulletin Board, Published February 2007

Reviews a training DVD that presents dialectical behavior therapy skills being taught by deaf clinicians to deaf consumers as an approach to improve deaf people's access to behavioral health care.

Stress Response May Underlie African- Americans' Reduced Pain Tolerance

Basic Science, Published October 2006

Summarizes research suggesting a physiological difference as the explanation for African-Americans' reported low tolerance for pain.

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