Addiction Key Studies


Biological Models of Addiction

McGue (1999)

  • Heritability estimates between 50-60% for both men and women

Agrawal and Lynskey (2006)

  • Review of studies on the heritability of illicit drug abuse and dependence - found that this was significantly influenced by genetic fators - 45-80%

Kendler et al (2003)

  • Analysed data from US twin registry and found that a common genetic factor contributed to the total variance in alcohol dependence, illicit drug abuse and dependence, and adult antisocial behaviour 
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Biological Models of Addiction

Blum et al (1991)

  • Found an increased prevelance of the A1 variant among children born to alcoholics 

Noble et al (1991)

  • Found that the A1 variant was present in more than two thirds of deceased alcoholics, whereas only one fifth of deceased non-alcoholics had the A1 variant

Comings et al (1996)

  • A1 variant in smokers - 48% carried the variant compared to 25% of the general population - men started smoking earlier and had shorter periods of astinence from smoking
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Biological Models of Addiction

Robinson and Berridge (1993)

  • Incentive Senistisation Theory - repeated exposure to drugs leads to incresing sensitivity of the brain to their desirability, which can persist even in the absence of continue exposure

Koob and Kreek (2007)

  • As a result of downregulation, the drug levels that are needed to trigger the brain reward system increase

Noble (1998)

  • Meta-analysis found that 48% of severe alcoholics, 32% of less severe alcoholics, and 16% of controls are carries of the A1 variant 
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Biological Models of Addiction

Comings et al (1991) 

  • Found that the A1 variant occurs in people with Autism and Tourette's Syndrome - 45% of Tourette's compared to 25% of control - nt thought to be pleasure seeking 

Volkow et al (2001)

  • Gave ritalin, which gently lifts dopamine levels, to a group of volunteers - some loved it but some hated it. Found that those who liked the rush had fewer dopamine receptors 

Grant et al (1998)

  • Experiment with monkeys found that animals lost social status and dopamine receptors 

Volkow (2003)

  • Those who grow up in stimulating environemtns are protected against addiction - they have more chances to get excited about natural stimuli so don't turn to artificial means 
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Cognitive Models of Addiction

Cohen and Lichtenstein (1990)

  • Smokers report highe stress levels than non-smokers, and their levels of stress decrease when they stop smoking - when they relapse, they rise again

Parrott (1998)

  • Each cigarette has an immediate effect on stress because it relieves the withdrawal symptoms that arise when a smoker can't smoke - there is an ongoing effect from smoking that increases stress.

Southwick et al (1981)

  • Heavier drinkers have more positive expectations about the effects of alcohol compared to light drinkers 
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Cognitive Models of Addiction

Brown (1985)

  • Drinking has been shown to be associated with expectations o physical and social pleasure, tension reduction, greater sociability and enhanced cognitive and motor functioning 

Tate et al (1994)

  • Told smokers that they should experience no negative effects during a period of abstinence - led to fewer reported somatic and psychological effects than a control group. Those told to expect somatic effects experienced more severe somatic complaints than a control group

Griffiths (1994)

  • Compared 30 regular and 30 non-regular gamblers in terms of verbalisations when gambling - regular gamblers believed they were more skilful and were more likely to make irrational verbalisations - tended to treat the machine as a human and explain losses as 'near wins'
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Cognitive Models of Addiction

Gottdiener et al (2008)

  • Meta-analysis of 10 studies to test the idea that substance abuse is associated with failures of ego control - found that participants with substance abuse disorders showed failures in ego control compared with a control group

Sanjuan et al (2009)

  • Found that sexually abused women were more likely to turn to alcohol to remove sexual inhibitions than were non-abused women.

Leigh (1987) 

  • Suggests that subjective evaluation of the expected effects ight be more important - found that the more favourably evaluated the impairment effects of drinking were, the greater overall alcohol use 
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Cognitive Models of Addiction

West (2006)

  • Utility - may reach a point where life is so unpleasant and the prospect of a better life without addiction is so strong that they stop the behaviour - continuing to smoke may also demonstrate control in that they perceive the costs of stopping to be greater than the benefits

Sher et al (1996)

  • Found that, compared to women, men reported higher positive expectations for tension reduction, social lubrication, activity enhancement and performance enhancement 
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Learning Models of Addiction

White (1996)

  • All positive reinforcers release dopamine into the mesolimbic system - effect can be produced by food, drink and sex but also by cocaine, nicotine and alcohol

Griffiths (2009)

  • Gamblers playing slot machines may become addicted because of the physiological, psychological, social and financial rewards 

Glautier et al (1991)

  • Alcohol-related stimuli elicit many of the same physiological responses as alcohol itself, such as increased heart rate and arousal 
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Learning Models of Addiction

Marlatt and George (1984)

  • Presence of multiple cues arouses positive outcome expectations which then trigger a motivation to use the drug once more

West (2006)

  • Addicts frequently experience a conflict between the conscious desire to restain themselves from the drug, and the motivational forces that impel them to continue 

Robinson and Berrige (1993)

  • Although many people take potentially addictive drugs, relatively few become addicts
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Learning Models of Addiction

Robins et al (1975)

  • Returning Vietnam Veterans who had become addicted to heroin whilst in Vietnam - those returning to different environments were less likely to relapse then those returning to similar environements

Drummond et al (1990)

  • Cue exposure treatment - presenting the cues without the opportunity to engage in the drug-taking behaviour - leads to stimulus discrimination and extinguishs the association between the cue and the drug - reduces cravings 

DiBlasio and Benda (1993)

  • Peer influences have been found to be the primary influence for aodlescents who smoke or use drugs 
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Learning Models of Addiction

Lawrance (1989)

  • Among adults, those who smoke more frequently have less confidence in their ability to abstain, and among adolescents, self-efficacy predicts the onset of smoking and progression from experimental to regular use

Botvin (2000)

  • Efect forms of prevention programmes should be targeted a beginner adolescents - resistance training and informing them of influences of peers 
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Specific Addictions

McAllister et al (1984)

  • Smoking is a symbolic act conveying tough adult behaviour - promotes smoking as an enjoyable activity and popularity

Jarvis (2004)

  • Children who favour this view of smoking tend to come from backgrounds where smoking is common - enough to tolerate the unpleasantness of the first few cigarettes

Fidler et al (2008)

  • Examined UK smoking trends and found smoking was associated with social and economic disadvantage, with poorer smokers tending to have higher levels of nicotine intake 
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Specific Addictions

Shah et al (2005)

  • Found evidence of genetic transmission in gambling in men

Black et al (2006)

  • Also found that first-degree relatives of pathological gamblers were more likely to suffer from pathological gambling than were more distant relatives

Zuckerman (1979)

  • High sensation seekers have a lower appreciation of risk and anticipate arousal as more positive than do low sensation seekers 
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Specific Addictions

Blaszcynski et al (1990)

  • Found that poor tolerance for boredom may contribute to repetitive gambling behaviour - found that pathological gamblers had higher boredom proneness scores than a control group - no differences between the types of gambling

Mayeux et al (2008)

  • Found a positive relationship (predictive) between boys aged 16, smoking and popularity two years later - other risky behaviours was the opposite - popularity predicted the onset of these risky behaviours two years later 

Khaled et al (2009)

  • Long term smoking may have an adverse effect on mood because it alters brain chemistry - found that the incidence of depression was highest in current smokers and those trying to quit 
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Specific Addictions

Peretti-Watel et al (2009)

  • Specific types of neighbourhood and poor housing conditions closely correlated with socioeconomic status and were also found to be correlated with smoking and nicotine addiction - interventions should target poor housing 

Slutske et al (2000)

  • Found that 64% of the variation in risk for pathological gambling could be accounted for by genetic factors 

Alessi and Petry (2003)

  • Impulsivity personality trait is a significant predictor of the development of gambling behaviour and other risky behaviours 
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Specific Addictions

Coventry and Brown (1993)

  • Those who exclusively betted on horse racing in an off-course betting shop wer elower sensation seekers than non-gamblers - also found that casino gamblers were higher sensation seekers than the general population 

Lopez et al (1994)

  • Women start smoking later than men - gender related differences in context and stages 
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Media and Addictive Behaviour

Sulkunen (2007)

  • Analysed 61 scenes involving various addictions - presented scenes of drug competence and enjoyment of the effects and was frequently contrasted with the dullness of ordinary life - also represented as a way of alleviating a particular problem. 

Gunasekera et al (2005)

  • Reviewed 87 films and found that the most common addictions were alcohol and tobacco - portrayed drugs positively and without showing negative consequences. 53 episodes of sex - one suggestion of condom use - no references to consequences. 1/4 films were free fom negative health behaviours 

Bennett et al (1991) 

  • Psst.. The Really Useful Guide to Alcohol - improved knowledge but no reduction in alcohol attitude or consumption 
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Media and Addictive Behaviour

Kramer et al (2009)

  • Drinking Less? Do it yourself! - intervention group was more successful than a control group in achieving low ris problem drinking - maintained three months later

Hornik et al (2008) 

  • Examined effect of US congress drug campaign - failed to accomplish its goal and also led to increased marijuana use 

Sargent and Hanewinkel (2009)

  • Surveyed 5000 adolescents - found that those who had never smoked and were exposed to movie smoking - significant factor and predictor of whether they had begun smoking one year later 
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Media and Addictive Behaviour

Boyd (2008)

  • Films do represent negative effects - physical deterioration, sexual degradation, violence, cime and moral decline - US filmmakers provided with script-to-screen advice and offered financial reward if they show addiction in a negative light 

Byrne (1997)

  • Films are important because they give widespread appeal to addiction but also provide enduring stereotypes of drug addicts for the public and the addict to see

Kramer et al (2009)

  • Problems: Intervention group had weekly visits from researchers which may have influenced results - waiting list group was aware that they would receive treatment and so they may have postponed behavioural change - explains inlated difference 
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Media and Addictive Behaviour

Hornik et al (2008)

  • Two reasons why campaign didn't work: messages weren't novel and made drug use commonplace to adolescents

Johnston et al (2002)

  • Youths who saw the campaign took the message that their peers were using marijuana and so were likely to imitate use 
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Theory of Planned Behaviour

Armitage and Conner (2001)

  • Meta-analysis found that perceived behavioural control added an extra 6% of the variance in intention compared to the assessment of attitude and subjective norm alone

Armitage et al (1999)

  • TPB is too rational - fails to take into account emotions, compulsions and other irrational determinants of human behaviour 

Albarracin et al (2005)

  • Filling out a questionnaire - people find it hard to anticipate the strong desires and emotions that compel their behaviour in rea lie - strong emotions may explain why some people act irrationally by failing to carry out intended behaviour even when in their best interests  
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Theory of Planned Behaviour

Ajzen and Fishbein (2005)

  • Model is successful in predicting intention to change rather than actual behavioural change - typically found in the prediction of health behaviours that involve the adoption of difficult behavioural change prjects, such as stopping smoking. TPB is an account of intention formation rather than specifying the processes involved in translating the intention into action

Abraham et al (1998)

  • We can make a distinction between a motivational phase, which results in the formation of behavioural intention, and a post-decisional phase, which involves behavioural initiation and maintenance

White et al (2008)

  • Examined sun protection behaviours - completed questionnaire - two weeks later - results showed that the TPB predictors were significant predictors of intentions to engage in sun protection 
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Types of Intervention

Hollander et al (2000)

  • Gamblers treated with SSRIs to increase serotonin levels showed significant improvement levels compared to a control group - worked by reducing the rewards and reinforcing properties of gambling - reduces urge to gamble

Sindelar et al (2007)

  • Participants allocated to either a reward or no-reward condition in addiction to normal treatment - those who drew for prizes tested negative for drugs each time. Drug use dropped for participants in the reward condition - negative urine samples were 60% higher 

Stead et al (2006)

  • Found that people who eceived repeated calls from a counsellor increased their odds of stopping smoking by 50% compared to smokers with only self-help tools 
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Types of Intervention

Kim and Grant (2001)

  • 32 gamblers over six weeks - failed to demonstrate any superiority for SSRI treatment over a placebo - support for naltrexone comes from a study that found significant decreases in gambling thoughts and behaviours after six weeks of treatment 

Ladoucer et al (2001)

  • Those who complete CBT - 86% no longer filled criteria of gambling addiction - better perception of control over their gambling, increased self-efficacy, improvements maintained one year later.

Sylvain et al (1997)

  • Evaluated the effectiveness of CBT in male gamblers - signiicant improvements after treament, maintained in a one year follow up
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Types of Intervention

Crits-Cristoph et al (2003)

  • Marked reduction in HIV risk associated with reduction in cocaine use (NIDA) - due to reduction in unprotected sex that was associated with high levels of cocaine use 

West (2009)

  • Legislation ban - rebound effect as attempts to stop smoking were greater in the nine months before the ban than the 17 months after 
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Canada Youth Smoking Survey (2006)

  • Found that younger people who begin smoking = more likely to progress onto gateway drugs

Levin et al (1990)

  • Found a link between nicotine and addiction in female rats. Adolescent rates self-administered more nicotine than adults and this continued into adulthood

McAllister (1984)

  • Found increased levels of smoking is linked to peer encouragement and approval 
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Sussman and Ames (2001)

  • Friend and peer use of drugs is a strong predictor of drug use among teenagers

Francis (1996)

  • Found a link between alcohol/nicotine dependence and neurotic and psychotic personality types

Teeson (2002)

  • Claimed it is hard to see whether the addiction caused the personality, or the other way round
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NIDA (1999)

  • Claimed that everyday stress could contribute to initiation and maintenance as well as relapse in addiction

Driessen et al (2008)

  • 30% of drug addicts and 15% of alcoholics suffer from PTSD 
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