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Good Behavior Game Wins 2012 Mentor International Best Practice Award

The NIDA-supported Good Behavior Game recently was honored with the 2012 Mentor International Best Practice Award. The game, which focuses on reducing disruptive behaviors in elementary school classrooms, has been shown to prevent drug abuse and other problems in adolescence and young adulthood.

Adolescent Smoking and Drinking at Historic Lows

Rates of adolescent cigarette smoking and alcohol drinking stood at historic lows in 2011, but marijuana use trended upward, according to the Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey.

Prevention System Has Lasting Effects, Benefit Exceeds Costs

Towns that implemented a drug abuse prevention program called Communities That Care will see a return of $5.30 for each $1 they invested during the 5-year trial of the intervention, according to a cost-benefit analysis. The estimate is based on reductions in smoking and delinquency observed during the fourth year of the study among eighth-graders and the projected total costs of smoking, delinquency, and crime avoided over the lifetimes of study participants.

Cognitive Strategy Reduces Craving by Altering Brain Activity

While viewing images of cigarettes, smokers reported milder cravings when they shifted their focus from the pleasures of smoking to its harmful effects. Brain imaging showed a correlation between the reductions in craving and altered activity levels in regions associated with emotional regulation and reward.

Women and Sex/Gender Differences Research Program

NIDA’s Women and Sex/Gender Differences Research Program focuses on gender-specific addiction risk factors and treatment needs.

Desire to Smoke Subsides, But Cigarette Cues Retain Power

During early abstinence, smokers’ cravings triggered by cigarette cues intensified over time, providing evidence that people can experience a phenomenon previously observed in experiments with animals

Research Focuses on Groups With High Smoking Rates

NIDA Director Nora Volkow
Dr. Volkow discusses NIDA’s efforts to develop effective antismoking treatments for populations with persistently high rates of smoking, such as people with psychiatric disorders, high school dropouts, and Native Americans.

Tobacco Smokers Have High Probability of Transition to Dependence

First-time smokers have a much higher chance of eventually becoming dependent than first-time users alcohol, cannabis, and cocaine.

Vouchers Improve Mothers’ Smoking Abstinence and Newborns’ Weight

Pregnant women who received financial incentives to refrain from smoking during late pregnancy were more successful at remaining abstinent and less likely to have babies with low birth weight, according to data from three trials.

In Animals, Receptor Puts Brakes on Nicotine Consumption

New research suggests that differences in tobacco consumption reflect, in part, differences in the functional efficacy of a specific type of receptor in a pathway of the brain. In animal studies, nicotinic acetylcholine receptors with the α5 subunit played a key role in producing aversive responses to nicotine, thereby dissuading further consumption of the drug.

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