Another brain receptor confirmed to affect alcohol intake; may serve as treatment target
A new set of experiments in mice confirms that a brain receptor associated with the reinforcing effects of marijuana also helps to stimulate the rewarding and pleasurable effects of alcohol. The research, which was conducted at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory and was published online September 2, 2005 by the journal Behavioural Brain Research, confirms a genetic basis for susceptibility to alcohol abuse and also suggests that drugs designed to block these receptors could be useful in treatment.
“These findings build on our understanding of how various receptors in the brain’s reward circuits contribute to alcohol abuse, help us understand the role of genetic susceptibility, and move us farther along the path toward successful treatments,” said Brookhaven’s Panayotis (Peter) Thanos, lead author of this study and many others on “reward” receptors and drinking (see: this release and , www.bnl.gov/thanoslab).
Karen McNulty Walsh | EurekAlert!
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