Biological Explanation of Addiction

  • Created by: Laura B
  • Created on: 15-06-15 19:07


  • It's been suggested that gambling can be intitate through the levels of dopamine within the body
  • When an indidivdual engages in an addictive behaviour such as gambling this raises dopamine levels, creating an acute stressor which endures a nature high
  • To recreate this biochemical high and individual is likely to replicate this action again 
  • Demonstrating that initiation of gambling can be due to dopmaine 
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D2A1 AO2

  • To support this researchers have investgated the influence of the gene D2A1 in pathological gamblers - which regualtes dopaminelevels
  • They found that in these gamblers this gene was defective and in gambling addiction
  • Therefore suggestsing that we are prediposed in developing an addicition 
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Breen AO2

  • Suggetsed that this explanation was inaqueate as it doesn't explain why some people develop addicitions faster than other
  • They found that it took a year for people to become addicted to video gambling where as it took 3 years for people to become addicted to horse racing 
  • Therefore suggesting that there are other factors influencing addiction as the biological explantion can not explain why people develop addicitons at differant rates 
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  • Researchers have suggested that the gene SLC6A3-9 can explain why some people develop addicition
  • This gene is used to maintain dopamine levels and usally reframes people fromengaging in amoking
  • It's believed people who do not posses this gene are more likely to develop smoking addiciton 
  • It's also believed that smoking can be intitatted through addiction
  • It'sbeleived that the influence of genetics can range between 30-80% of people
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  • Not 100% - not purely biological factors 
  • Other factors also influencing 
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  • Suggested there is a biological link that prediposes us to become more likely to dvelop addictions however also suggested that other factors may enhance the likeihood of this 
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