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Identification of the cellular mechanisms of drug and nicotine addiction.

The George lab, in collaboration with multiple research groups, published several studies that identify key brain mechanisms responsible for drug and nicotine addiction.

These studies 1) provide robust preclinical evidence fort the efficacy of deep brain stimulation of the subthalamic nucleus in cocaine addiction, 2) double dissociate the role of the dorsal and ventral serotoninergic systems in cocaine intake, 3) provide a mechanism to explain the reducing effect of nicotine on body weigh, and 4) identify that interaction between two peptides in the thalamus play a key role in relapse to cocaine seeking.

1: Subthalamic nucleus high frequency stimulation prevents and reverses escalated cocaine use. Pelloux Y, Degoulet M, Tiran-Cappello A, Cohen C, Lardeux S, George O, Koob GF, Ahmed SH, Baunez C. Mol Psychiatry. 2018 Jun 7. doi: 10.1038/s41380-018-0080-y. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 29880881.

2: Median and Dorsal Raphe Serotonergic Neurons Control Moderate Versus Compulsive Cocaine Intake. Verheij MMM, Contet C, Karel P, Latour J, van der Doelen RHA, Geenen B, van Hulten JA, Meyer F, Kozicz T, George O, Koob GF, Homberg JR. Biol Psychiatry. 2018 Jun 15;83(12):1024-1035. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2017.10.031. Epub 2017 Nov 20. PubMed PMID: 29357981; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5960600.

3: Self-administered nicotine increases fat metabolism and suppresses weight gain in male rats. Rupprecht LE, Kreisler AD, Spierling SR, de Guglielmo G, Kallupi M, George O, Donny EC, Zorrilla EP, Sved AF. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2018 Apr;235(4):1131-1140. doi: 10.1007/s00213-018-4830-y. Epub 2018 Jan 21. PubMed PMID: 29354872.

4: Dynorphin Counteracts Orexin in the Paraventricular Nucleus of the Thalamus: Cellular and Behavioral Evidence. Matzeu A, Kallupi M, George O, Schweitzer P, Martin-Fardon R.Neuropsychopharmacology. 2018 Apr;43(5):1010-1020. doi: 10.1038/npp.2017.250. Epub 2017 Oct 20. PubMed PMID: 29052613; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC5854806.

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