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NIDA Notes Articles

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Abstinent Smokers' Nicotinic Receptors Take More Than a Month to Normalize

October 2009

Describes research revealing that for up to 6 weeks after smokers quit, their brain cells have more nicotine-binding receptors than nonsmokers, which may explain the struggle to quit.

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Drug Cues Outside Awareness Rapidly Trigger Brain's Emotion Centers

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.

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Manic Mice Show Heightened Sensitivity to Rewards

October 2009

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.

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Lower Rates of Cigarette and Marijuana Smoking Among Exercising Teens

October 2009

Highlights prevalence rates of cigarette and marijuana smoking among teens who exercise regularly as compared with their less active peers.

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Prenatal Nicotine Exposure May Damage Receptors That Influence Auditory Processing

April 2009

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.

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Cocaine Locks Rats Into Unrewarding Behaviors

April 2009

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

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High School Seniors Report Alcohol- or Drug-Impaired Driving Experiences

April 2009

Examines the incidence of high school seniors’ alcohol- or drug-related driving experiences based on 2001 through 2006 data.

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Methamphetamine Abusers Show Increased Distractibility

April 2009

Highlights findings from a study of former methamphetamine abusers showing evidence of impairment in areas of the brain known to influence cognition, emotion, and decision making.

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NIDA's National Advisory Council Welcomes New Members

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.

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Court Mandates Help Men With Antisocial Personality Disorders Stay in Treatment

April 2009

Reports on a study of men with co-occurring substance abuse and antisocial personality disorders and the potential benefit of judicially mandated addiction treatment.

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