The Biological Approach to Addiction

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  • The Biological Approach to Addiction
    • Initiation
      • DRD2 - Dopamine regulation
      • SLC6A3-9 - Dopamine removal
      • Application
        • (Smoking) Thorgeirsson et al (2008)
        • (Gambling) Slutske (2010)
    • Maintenance
      • Inherited sensitive mesolimbic dopamine systme
      • Addicts continue with their addictive behaviour to maintain increasingly high levels of dopamine (tolerance) 
      • Application
        • (Smoking)  Schachter (1977) - high low nicotine
        • (Gambling)  Chase and Clark (2010) - fMRI scans - MLDS - near misses
    • Relapse
      • Substances such as nicotine activate the dopamine reward pathway and the brain adapts to be in balance when the substance is present (neuroadaptation) 
      • Application
        • (Gambling) Wray and Dickerson (1981) - reported physical side effects (insomnia, loss of appetite, muscle weakness)
        • Lerman (2007) - abstained smoking one night - increased blood flow


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