High-resolution, non-invasive imaging techniques produce detailed diagrams of neural tracts, enabling new analyses of how brain regions are connected. Credit: Washington University - University of Minnesota Human Connectome Project consortium (http://humanconnectome.org/).
The human brain is the most complex organ in the body—you need it to drive a car, to enjoy a meal, to breathe, to create an artistic masterpiece, and to enjoy everyday activities. In brief, the brain regulates your body’s basic functions; enables you to interpret and respond to everything you experience; and shapes your thoughts, emotions, and behavior. Drugs, however, can alter important brain areas that are necessary for life-sustaining functions and can drive the compulsive drug abuse that marks addiction. As a result, NIDA supports a large body of neuroscience research that can provide clues how better to manage and prevent substance use disorders.
Effects of Specific Drugs on the Brain
- Commonly Abused Drugs Charts
- Neuroscience Consortium
- Keeping Youth Drug Free - SAMHSA, Online Publication
- Opioids and Adolescents - Office of Adolescent Health
- Video: "Adolescent Substance Use, Addiction, and Treatment" with Sarah Bagley, M.D. - Office of Adolescent Health
- MEDLINEplus Health Information on Drug Abuse - National Library of Medicine, NIH
- www.abovetheinfluence.com - Office of National Drug Control Policy
- healthfinder.gov - U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Past information on many drugs of abuse is available on our Archives site.
Clinical trials are research studies in human volunteers conducted to answer specific health questions. Learn about the NIH-sponsored clinical trials available to you.
- NIDA Clinical Trial Locator - answer a few simple questions and get contact information for Clinical Trials near you.
Other Clinical Trials information sources:
- NIH Clinical Trials and You - NIH site that helps explain about clinical trials and why people participate.
- NIDA Trials at ClinicalTrials.gov - a resource of federally and privately supported clinical trials.
- Clinical Research Studies from the National Drug Abuse Treatment Clinical Trials Network (CTN) - a NIDA coordinated network of research institutions conducting human trials on drug abuse solutions.
- Research Studies at NIDA Intramural Research Program - located in Baltimore, Maryland.
Get this Publication
Cite this article
NIDA. (2018, February 15). Drugs and the Brain. Retrieved from https://www.drugabuse.gov/related-topics/drugs-brain
Addiction is a disease that affects both brain and behavior.