Brain imaging studies of the cocaine addict: Implications for reinforcement and addiction

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These studies document dopaminergic abnormalities in cocaine abusers. They also suggest a regulatory role of Dopamine (DA) in frontal metabolism. The correlation of striatal D{sub 2} receptor availability with metabolism was strongest for orbital frontal cortex (OFC) cingulate and prefrontal cortices. In cocaine abusers tested during early withdrawal (<1 week) the OFC was found to be hypermetabolic and metabolism in OFC and prefrontal cortices were found to be significantly associated with cocaine craving . Thus, we postulate that repeated and intermittent DA stimulation, as seen during a cocaine binge, activates the prefrontal and OFC cortices increasing the drive to compulsively ... continued below

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14 p.

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Volkow, N.D. & Fowler, J.S. July 1, 1995.

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Description

These studies document dopaminergic abnormalities in cocaine abusers. They also suggest a regulatory role of Dopamine (DA) in frontal metabolism. The correlation of striatal D{sub 2} receptor availability with metabolism was strongest for orbital frontal cortex (OFC) cingulate and prefrontal cortices. In cocaine abusers tested during early withdrawal (<1 week) the OFC was found to be hypermetabolic and metabolism in OFC and prefrontal cortices were found to be significantly associated with cocaine craving . Thus, we postulate that repeated and intermittent DA stimulation, as seen during a cocaine binge, activates the prefrontal and OFC cortices increasing the drive to compulsively self-administer cocaine. During cocaine discontinuation and protracted withdrawal and with decreased DA stimulation, these frontal cortical regions become hyponietabolic. Dopaminergic stimulation by a DA-enhancing drug and/or environmental conditioning will reactivate these frontal regions resetting the compulsion to self-administer cocaine and the inability to terminate this behavior. The pharmacokionetic studies with [11C]cocaine are consistent with behavioral and pharmacological studies in animals as well as in vitro studies which have revealed that while the mechanisms for cocaine`s reinforcing properties are complex, they partly involve the brain`s dopamine system and also highlight the importance of cocaine`s pharmacokinetic on its unique reinforcing properties.

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14 p.

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INIS; OSTI as DE95013846

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  • Other Information: PBD: [1995]

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  • Other: DE95013846
  • Report No.: BNL--61771
  • Grant Number: AC02-76CH00016
  • DOI: 10.2172/93949 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 93949
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc791525

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  • July 1, 1995

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Dec. 19, 2015, 7:14 p.m.

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  • Jan. 6, 2016, 5:14 p.m.

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Volkow, N.D. & Fowler, J.S. Brain imaging studies of the cocaine addict: Implications for reinforcement and addiction, report, July 1, 1995; Upton, New York. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc791525/: accessed September 26, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.