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Title: Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction

Nicotine reinforces the use of tobacco products primarily through its interaction with specific receptor proteins within the brain’s reward centers. A critical step in the process of addiction for mamore »ny drugs, including nicotine, is the release of the neurotransmitter dopamine. A single nicotine exposure will enhance dopamine levels for hours, however, nicotinic receptors undergo both activation and then desensitization in minutes, which presents an important problem. How does the time course of receptor activity lead to the prolonged release of dopamine? We have found that persistent modulation of both inhibitory and excitatory synaptic connections by nicotine underlies the sustained increase in dopamine release. Because these inputs express different types of nicotinic receptors there is a coordinated shift in the balance of synaptic inputs toward excitation of the dopamine neurons. Excitatory inputs are turned on while inhibitory inputs are depressed, thereby boosting the brain’s reward system.« less
Title: Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction
Publication Date: 2009-06-26
OSTI Identifier: 987368
DOE Contract Number: AC02-07CH11359
Other Number(s): Other: Mechanisms of Nicotine Addiction
Resource Type: Multimedia
Specific Type: Multimedia Presentation
Resource Relation: Conference: Fermilab Colloquia, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FNAL), Batvia, Illinois (United States), presented on June 26, 2002
Research Org: FNAL (Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FNAL), Batavia, IL (United States))
Sponsoring Org: USDOE Office of Science (SC)
Publisher: Fermilab Colloquia Online: 2000 to the Present Videos of Science Lecture and Presentations from the Colloquium Program at Fermi National Laboratory
Country of Publication: United States
Language: English
Run Time: 0:59:29
System Entry Date: 2016-01-27