Navigation Links
Synthetic stimulants called 'bath salts' act in the brain like cocaine
Date:7/23/2012

CHAPEL HILL, NC The use of the synthetic stimulants collectively known as "bath salts" have gained popularity among recreational drug users over the last five years, largely because they were readily available and unrestricted via the Internet and at convenience stores, and were virtually unregulated.

Recent studies point to compulsive drug taking among bath salts users, and several deaths have been blamed on the bath salt mephedrone (4-methylmethcathinone or "meow-meow"). This has led several countries to ban the production, possession, and sale of mephedrone and other cathinone derivative drugs.

In October 2011, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration placed mephedrone on Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substances Act for one year, pending further study. "Basically, the DEA was saying we don't know enough about these drugs to know how potentially dangerous they could be, so we're going to make them maximally restricted, gather more data, and then come to a more reasoned decision as to how we should classify these compounds," said C.J. Malanga, MD, PhD, associate professor of neurology, pediatrics and psychology at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine. He is also a member of the UNC's Bowles Center for Alcohol Studies.

Now, results of a new study led by Malanga offer compelling evidence for the first time that mephedrone, like cocaine, does have potential for abuse and addiction. "The effects of mephedrone on the brain's reward circuits are comparable to similar doses of cocaine," he said. "As expected our research shows that mephedrone likely has significant abuse liability."

A report of the study was published online on June 21, 2012 by the journal Behavioural Brain Research. The report's first author and MD/PhD student at UNC J. Elliott Robinson points out that mephedrone and other potentially addictive stimulants "inappropriately activate brain reward circuits that are involved in positive reinforcement. These play a role in the drug 'high' and compulsive drug taking."

The study of laboratory mice used intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS), a technique developed in the 1950s that can measure a drug's ability to activate reward circuits. In ICSS studies, animals are trained to perform a behavioral task (pressing a lever or a button with their nose or, as in this study, spinning a wheel) to receive a reward: direct stimulation of the brain pathways involved in reward perception.

During the study, adult animals were implanted with brain stimulating electrodes. Measures of their wheel spinning effort were made before, during and after they received various doses of either mephedrone or cocaine.

"One of the unique features of ICSS is that all drugs of abuse, regardless of how they work pharmacologically, do very similar things to ICSS: they make ICSS more rewarding," Malanga said. "Animals work harder to get less of it [ICSS] when we give them these drugs."

Indeed, as was expected, cocaine increased the ability of mice to be rewarded by self-stimulation. "And what we found, which is new, is that mephedrone does the same thing. It increases the rewarding potency of ICSS just like cocaine does. "

Malanga said the study supports the idea that mephedrone and drugs like it may have significant addiction potential, "and justifies the recent legislation to maintain maximum restriction to their access by the Food and Drug Administration." On July 9 President Obama signed into law legislation passed by Congress to permanently ban the sale of bath salts in the U.S.


'/>"/>

Contact: Les Lang
llang@med.unc.edu
919-966-9366
University of North Carolina Health Care
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Stimulant marketed as natural in sports supplement actually of synthetic origin
2. Biosynthetic grape-derived compound prevents progression of Alzheimers disease in mice
3. The US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Help All Recipients Of Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Get To The Best Attorneys Because Time Could Run Out To Get Them Identified
4. US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Help All Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recipients Get To The Best Attorneys Out Of Fear These Recipients Won't Be Compensated
5. Simplus Technologies Announces First Update on its Fear of Flying App for Turbulence Called Turbcast
6. US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Help Women Who Used TheOsteoporosis Drug Called Fosamax And Then Had A Unexplainable Femur Fracture Get To The Best Attorneys Or Law Firms
7. US Drug Watchdog Dramatically Increases Their Efforts To Get All Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recipients Identified To The Best Possible Attorneys Before Time Runs Out
8. US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Help Every Recipient Of A DePuy Pinnacle Or Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Who Had To Go Through Revision Surgery Get To The Best Lawyers
9. US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Help All Recipients Of A DePuy Pinnacle Or Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Get To The Best Attorneys Regardless If Their Device Has Failed
10. US Drug Watchdog Now Offers To Get A Free Legal Review For All DePuy ASR Recipients Who Received A Letter From Broadspire About Their Recalled DePuy Hip Implant
11. US Drug Watchdog Now Urges All Recalled DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recipients Call Them For The Names Of The Best Attorneys Out Of Fear The Recipients Will Get Nothing
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Synthetic stimulants called 'bath salts' act in the brain like cocaine
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Hidden Cypress in Sun City is the place to be on March 3rd ... Frederick Weniger will be hosting this educational seminar from 5:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. ... special pricing on offers. In addition, prizes will be given away and light refreshments will ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... ... individuals looking to lead a healthy lifestyle have decreased carbohydrate consumption and increased their ... delved into this niche allowing those giving up their beloved pasta a chance to ... of protein and only 7 grams of carbohydrates per 50 gram serving--a ratio that ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... Tennessee (PRWEB) , ... February 13, 2016 , ... ... the Infusion Nurses Society (INS) states that vein visualization technology should be used ... by healthcare facilities around the world, the INS Standards mandate the use of ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... , ... In the early or “honeymoon” stage of a relationship, couples strive ... their way to be romantic, and may exaggerate a strength or two in an ... profile. , A recent study from Queendom.com , however, suggests that new ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... Antonio, TX (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... ... love, as expressed in Blue SKies Buddha, the biography of Rama - Dr. Frederick ... fact a love story, the love of a Buddhist teacher for teaching and helping ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/11/2016)... IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 11, 2016 PRO-DEX, INC. (NasdaqCM: ... quarter ended December 31, 2015. The Company also filed its ... fiscal year 2016 with the Securities and Exchange Commission today. ... December 31, 2015 --> --> ... 2015 increased $2.6 million, or 95%, to $5.4 million from ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016   Health 2.0 , ... new health technologies, announced today " 10 Year Global ... health tech over the past ten years.   ... a decade, Health 2.0 has served as the preeminent ... connected with thousands of technologies, companies, innovators, and patient-activists ...
(Date:2/11/2016)... , Feb. 11, 2016  AfterPill.com is reporting that ... alcohol abstinence for all women who are at risk ... U.S. each year and raises the risks of unprotected ... --> According to the Guttmacher Institute, there ... women of child-bearing age, who have sex without the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: