Author(s): Koob GF, Le Moal M
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Abstract Understanding the neurobiological mechanisms of addiction requires an integration of basic neuroscience with social psychology, experimental psychology, and psychiatry. Addiction is presented as a cycle of spiralling dysregulation of brain reward systems that progressively increases, resulting in compulsive drug use and a loss of control over drug-taking. Sensitization and counteradaptation are hypothesized to contribute to this hedonic homeostatic dysregulation, and the neurobiological mechanisms involved, such as the mesolimbic dopamine system, opioid peptidergic systems, and brain and hormonal stress systems, are beginning to be characterized. This framework provides a realistic approach to identifying the neurobiological factors that produce vulnerability to addiction and to relapse in individuals with a history of addiction.
This article was published in Science
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy