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Cocaine Locks Rats Into Unrewarding Behaviors

Basic Science, Published April 2009
Brain circuits that guide behavior by registering consequences become less flexible after drug exposure.

Describes research with rats to better understand cocaine’s effect on the neural signaling in the learning circuits of the brain.

NIDA Initiates Pediatrics Symposium on Adolescent Health

Bulletin Board, Published April 2009

Presents highlights of a symposium sponsored by NIDA in October 2008 to discuss adolescent brain and cognitive development and consider the impact of drug abuse on young people.

Universities Offer Online Master's Program in Addiction Studies

Bulletin Board, Published April 2009

Describes a consortium of three universities that launched a 12-month intensive online program last August that leads to a master's degree in addiction studies.

NIDA's National Advisory Council Welcomes New Members

Bulletin Board, Published April 2009

Introduces five new members to the NIDA National Advisory Council meeting, including Drs. Xavier Castellanos, Steven Childers, Thomas Crowley, Anita Everett, and Hazel Szeto.

Henry Yamamura Obituary

Bulletin Board, Published December 2008

Remembers Henry I. "Hank" Yamamura, an eminent neuropharmacologist who pioneered radioligand binding assays, contributing valuable knowledge about neurotransmitter transporters and receptors.

Fewer Young Adults Abuse Cocaine and Methamphetamine, National Survey Finds

Public Health, Published December 2008

Reports prevalence rates of illicit drug abuse among youths and young adults based on 2007 data from a national survey of drug use and health.

Lofexidine May Enhance Naltrexone Efficacy

Treatment, Published December 2008

Highlights results from a pilot study suggesting that lofexidine, an anti-hypertensive medication, can enhance success rates among patients taking maintenance naltrexone to avoid opioid relapse.

Reducing Postpartum Drug Use

Prevention, Published December 2008

Highlights a computerized intervention that reduced new mothers' drug abuse in the first 4 months postpartum as reported in a clinical trial of 107 women who abused drugs.

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.

Selenium Shows Promise as an Adjunct Therapy for HIV

Treatment, Published December 2008

Reports on a randomized controlled trial of HIV-infected men and women who, as a result of receiving selenium supplements, experienced lower HIV viral load and greater CD4 cell count.

Nicotine Dependence is Linked With Mental Disorders in Pregnant Women

Treatment, Published December 2008

Reports on a link between mental disorders, including mood, anxiety, or personality disorder and nicotine dependence in pregnancy women.

Methadone Reduces Rats' Cocaine Seeking

Treatment, Published December 2008
High-dose methadone undermines animals' motivation to acquire cocaine.

Reports on an animal study showing that methadone, normally used as a therapy for opioid abuse, may prove to be an effective treatment for cocaine abuse.

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.

High-Risk Drug Offenders Do Better With Close Judicial Supervision

Prevention, Published December 2008
Low-risk offenders do equally well with and without regularly scheduled court appearances.

Reports on research showing that increasing the mandatory drug court monitoring sessions for high-risk drug offenders can enhance program success rates.

New Vaccines Are Being Developed Against Addiction and Relapse

Director's Perspective, Published December 2008

Highlights NIDA-funded research to develop vaccines against addiction to drugs such as cocaine, nicotine, phencyclidine (PCP), and methamphetamine.

NIDA Centers Raise Physicians' Awareness of Drug Abuse Issues

Bulletin Board, Published December 2008

Highlights four Centers of Excellence for Physician Information designed to increase physicians' awareness of research on the medical consequences of drug abuse and addiction and incorporate research findings into clinical practice.

Aripiprazole Prevents Rats From Resuming Cocaine Seeking

Treatment, Published December 2008
A medication prescribed for schizophrenia and manic phases of bipolar disorder shows promise as a cocaine addiction treatment.

Reports on study results indicating a medication prescribed for schizophrenia and manic phases of bipolar disorder shows promise as a cocaine addiction treatment.

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.

Research Breakthroughs in Drug Abuse Have Wide Applications in Other Fields

Director's Perspective, Published September 2008

Offers an overview of some of the NIDA-supported innovative research achievements to reduce the health and social effects of drug abuse and addiction.

NIDA Bestows Prizes at International Science Fair

Bulletin Board, Published September 2008

Announces the three winners of the NIDA and Scholastic Corporation 2008 Addiction Science Awards honoring high school students’ award-winning addiction-related projects.

Basic Science Discoveries Yield Novel Approaches to Analgesia

Treatment, Published September 2008
Research on glial cells and receptors leads to compounds that outperform morphine in preclinical trials.

Describes research to develop new compounds that match or exceed the pain relief provided by opioids while avoiding their shortcomings.

Booklet Explains the Science of Addiction

Bulletin Board, Published June 2008

Describes a booklet that explains what scientists know about how drug addiction changes the brain and affects behavior and clears up misconceptions about drug addiction.

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 Speeds AIDS Onset in Monkeys

Treatment, Published June 2008

Highlights the work of investigators who discovered key ways in which morphine may accelerate the progression of AIDS in animal studies.

Intervention Improves Employment Outlook For Methadone Patients

Treatment, Published June 2008

Describes a study of unemployed methadone patients and the use of assertive outreach and motivational techniques to improve the patients’ employment outlook.

Reduced Longevity Among Male Heroin Abusers, 1962-1997

Public Health, Published June 2008

Reviews the changing lifespan of heroin abusers as compared with that of the general U.S. population based on 1962-1997 data.

New Therapy Reduces Drug Abuse Among Patients With Severe Mental Illness

Treatment, Published June 2008
A specially designed group intervention also improves patients' functioning in the community.

Describes a new intervention that enhances recovery prospects for substance abusers whose mental illness complicates the path toward recovery.

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.

Linking NIDA to Researchers on a Global Scale

NIDA @ Work, Published June 2008

Highlights the NIDA International Program which works to strengthen international research networks, creating opportunities for global research collaboration, training, and scientific exchange.

Neuroscience Blueprint Promotes Efficiency, Synergy

Director's Perspective, Published June 2008

Describes a knowledge- and resource-sharing system for NIH-funded neuroscientists to access to data, advanced research tools, and technical assistance.

Behavioral Problems Related to Maternal Smoking During Pregnancy Manifest Early in Childhood

Prevention, Published June 2008
Researchers find probable precursors of adolescent conduct disorders in the behavior of toddlers and schoolchildren.

Describes research providing evidence that maternal smoking during pregnancy contributes to behavioral conduct disorders among toddlers, school-age children, and teens.

NIDA Renames Addiction Journal

Bulletin Board, Published June 2008

Alerts readers to the new renamed journal, Addiction Science and Clinical Practice, formerly titled Science and Practice Perspectives.

Social Neuroscience Meeting Aims To Improve Prevention, Treatment

Bulletin Board, Published June 2008

Presents highlights of a meeting of scientists and clinicians to review research results from the field of social neuroscience, the study of how neurobiology and the social environment interact.

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.

Teen Substance Abuse Continues to Decline

Public Health, Published March 2008

Reports on the prevalence of substance abuse among youth based on 2007 data from a national survey of behaviors, attitudes, and values.

Sertraline Does Not Help Methamphetamine Abusers Quit

Treatment, Published March 2008
Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors do not relieve the depressive symptoms of methamphetamine withdrawal and may produce unpleasant side effects.

Describes a new research finding indicating that the antidepressant sertraline (Zoloft), prescribed to relieve depression during the methamphetamine withdrawal process, may make quitting harder.

Researchers Develop a New Tracer for Cannabinoid Receptor

Basic Science, Published 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.

Cocaine Can Mobilize Stored Dopamine

Basic Science, Published March 2008

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

Bupropion Reduces Meth's Subjective Effects and Cue-Induced Craving

Treatment, Published March 2008

Describes a study investigating the use of the antidepressant bupropion as a potential therapy for methamphetamine addiction.

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.

HIV Patients Show Better Immune Recovery With Early Initiation of HAART

Published March 2008

Presents evidence that among men and women with HIV, those who received early initiation of HAART therapy, those with higher CD4+ levels, achieved better immune recovery.

Not All Mesolimbic Dopamine Neurons Are Alike

Basic Science, Published 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.

Epigenetics: The Promise of a New Science

Director's Perspective, Published March 2008

Discusses the role of epigenetics, the study of cellular mechanisms that control gene expression and its impacts on health and behavior, in addiction research.

Combination Treatment Extends Marijuana Abstinence

Published March 2008
Vouchers provide a strong incentive for abstinence during treatment, and cognitive-behavioral therapy helps patients maintain abstinence after treatment ends.

Describes research investigating the use of a treatment that combines vouchers and cognitive behavioral therapy as compared with the use of either treatment alone for marijuana abuse.

Chronic Cocaine Abusers Have Occult Insomnia in Early Abstinence

Published March 2008
Patients in early treatment may not recognize their own sleep impairment or its impact on their performance.

Reports on research of chronic cocaine abusers who may feel they are sleeping better during early abstinence revealed that the opposite may be true.

Chromosome 17 Harbors Opioid Dependence Genes

Basic Science, Published 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.

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