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Basic Science

Rats Reared Alone Show ADHD Signs

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

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

Lower Levels of Dopamine-Regulating Receptors Among Novelty Seekers

Describes research results reporting that people who favor novelty have lower-than-average availability of a receptor that inhibits dopamine's release from neurons, which likely stimulates the activity of reward circuits.

Brain Opioid Receptor Levels Predict Time to Cocaine Relapse

Describes study findings revealing that cocaine abusers who maintain high levels of a certain receptor in their brain during early abstinence relapse sooner than abusers whose levels drop.

Crack Cocaine Promotes Progression of HIV Infection to AIDS

Reports on two studies showing a high prevalence of HIV infection and more rapid progression to disability and death among drug abusers.

Brain Adaptation May Dampen Effects of Cocaine

Reports evidence that a cocaine-induced change in the structure of brain cells represents an adaptive response that may limit the drug’s impact.

Genetic Overlap Between Substance Abuse and Bipolar Disorder

Describes a literature analysis reporting on the prevalence of people with bipolar disorder who also have a substance use disorder and discusses the genetic link that may contribute to this comorbidity.

Peer Interaction Enhances Adolescent Rats' Drug Reward

Describes an animal study reporting that peer interaction enhances adolescent rats’ drug reward and discusses the impact of these findings to future research on drug reward in social context.

Studies Link Family of Genes to Nicotine Addiction

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

Gene Influences Impact of Maternal Smoking on Children's Behavioral Problems

Describes research showing that the combination of prenatal smoking exposure and specific genes increases children’s and adolescent’s risk for behavior problems.

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