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NIDA

The Brain & the Actions of Cocaine, Opiates, and Marijuana

7: Localization of opiate binding sites

Localization of opiate binding sites

When a person injects heroin or morphine, it too travels quickly to the brain. Point to the areas where opiates concentrate. The VTA, nucleus accumbens, caudate nucleus and thalamus are highlighted. The opiates bind to opiate receptors that are concentrated in areas within the reward system. Indicate that the action of opiates in the thalamus contributes to their ability to produce analgesia.

This page was last updated January 2007

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