Navigation Links
Study suggests nicotine addiction might be controlled by influencing brain mechanisms
Date:12/8/2007

Boca Raton, FL, December 8, 2007 There is a clear link between GABA a chemical substance of the central nervous system that inhibits neurons in the brain and nicotine dependence, according to a study presented today at the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology (ACNP) annual meeting. Researchers discovered that nicotine has significant effects on brain GABA, a finding which could potentially help curb the pleasurable effects of nicotine and help people break their addiction to it.

We found that GABA may provide a very useful target for nicotine addiction therapies, said Graeme Mason, Ph.D., associate professor in the Magnetic Resonance Research Center in the Departments of Diagnostic Radiology and Psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine and an ACNP member. GABA is just one of a complex network of actors that promotes addiction, and were hoping that this research will ultimately lead us to ways to help people quit smoking.

Mason sought to discover whether the enjoyable effects associated with smoking could be reduced in some way. When people use nicotine they may experience a sensation of reward, diminished anxiety, or a belief that they can focus more clearly or learn more easily. Researchers wanted to explore how a specific type of neuron that releases dopamine, a chemical that has been associated with pleasure, can prolong and intensify the pleasurable effects of nicotine. Although GABA inhibits those neurons, nicotine works against the ability of GABA to inhibit dopamine neurons after about 20 minutes, so the gratifying effects of nicotine are prolonged.

Researchers gave people who smoked regularly nicotine inhalers that deliver the same amount of the drug as in one cigarette. The amount of GABA in the subjects brains rose about 10%, but the brain was found to make GABA four times faster after using the inhalers, and the rate of new GABA generation remained high for at least 45 minutes. In other words, keeping the supply of GABA levels high has the potential to reduce the pleasurable effects of smoking, in terms of duration and intensity.

While GABA is probably not the root of nicotine addiction, it is part of a complex network of actors that are involved in addiction, Mason says.

Another study presented at the ACNP annual meeting which explored the role of GABA, genetics and environmental factors in smoking found that tobacco addiction is at least 50% determined by genetics. For this reason, researchers may be able to identify individuals who are vulnerable to nicotine dependence, and then implement prevention strategies accordingly.

For this study, Ming Li, Ph.D., Professor of Genetics in Psychiatry and Neurosciences at the University of Virginia recruited more than 2000 participants representing more than 600 families of smokers. They examined different regions on various chromosomes that showed linkage to nicotine addiction. Then they searched for susceptibility genes within these regions that appear to be associated with addiction. Some of these are the GABA-B receptor subunit 2 (GABAB2) gene on chromosome 9, and the GABA-A receptor-associated protein (GABARAP) gene on chromosome 17.

Li says the research could have significant public health implications because it could help curb smoking rates since researchers may be able to predict who is more prone to nicotine addiction. Tobacco is one of the most widely used substances; it kills more than 435,000 Americans each year, and despite increasing public awareness of the health risks associated with its use, little reduction in smoking prevalence has been achieved nationwide in recent years.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sharon Reis
sreis@gymr.com
202-745-5103
American College of Neuropsychopharmacology
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Penn study finds pro-death proteins required to regulate healthy immune function
2. New study shows promise in reducing surgical risks associated with surgical bleeding
3. Study, meta-analysis examine factors associated with death from heatstroke
4. Study suggests loss of 2 types of neurons -- not just 1 -- triggers Parkinsons symptoms
5. Study says COPD testing is not measuring up
6. Preclinical study suggests organ-transplant drug may aid in lupus fight
7. Ability to cope with stress can increase good cholesterol in older white men, study finds
8. High alcohol consumption increases stroke risk, Tulane study says
9. Mailman School of Public Health study examines link between racial discrimination and substance use
10. Pitt study finds inequality in tobacco advertising
11. Stanford study highlights cost-effective method of lowering heart disease risks
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... 2016 , ... In honor of National Physical Fitness and Sports Month in ... their fitness journey on social media. , The foot care company, which specializes ... product voucher each week during May to one winner. , “Whether the goal is ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 02, 2016 , ... Over $60 ... year’s best in pet gear and toys, leading product review site for Toys, Tots, ... of Excellence Awards at their Spring Showcase at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... May 02, 2016 , ... Further establishing itself as ... that the new WHIMZEES Variety Value Boxes were selected from over 1,000 entrants as ... Award. , WHIMZEES natural dental chews for dogs are a favorite product among ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... CA (PRWEB) , ... May 02, 2016 , ... The 2016 World Ultimate & Guts ... Ultimate Camp at Manhattan College, made the cut. The WUGC is being held in London, ... Teams won the gold in the men’s division, another gold in the women’s masters division, ...
(Date:5/2/2016)... ... May 02, 2016 , ... The Sixth Annual Lifestyle ... the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas, NV from October 17–19, 2016. The ... the event. , This year’s conference will offer presentations featuring new treatment ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/28/2016)...  The blood testing market in China ... Information and The Freedonia Group in a recent report.  ... The healthcare research firm said that China ... stations and in improving testing at the provincial level.  ... Blood Testing Market in China , which ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... April 28, 2016 Dr. Vivek ... and Ste phen Schmidt ... a leading provider of cloud-based software solutions for life sciences, today ... to bring a wealth of insight to a growing business.  This ... George Phillips joined ArisGlobal in the position ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... FREMONT, Calif. , April 28, 2016 ... Enterprise Validation Lifecycle Management Solutions (VLMS) today ... products and services for sufferers of chronic ... management System to manage their corporate validation ... been seeking a software solution to manage ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: