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View Full Version : Neuroscience: How nicotine rewires your noggin


Gservo
1st June 2002, 04:56 AM
Nicotine becomes habit-forming by hijacking the brain's pleasure pathways. But to better treat nicotine addicts, scientists need to figure out precisely how it does so. University of Chicago researchers led by postdoctoral student Huibert Mansvelder appear to have unlocked much of the mystery.

One way most drugs cause addiction when they hit the brain is by stimulating certain cells to make dopamine, the biochemical most crucial to the experience of pleasure. But according to the researchers, smoking does a good deal more than that. Using rats, they discovered that the first time a brain is subjected to nicotine, the substance not only stimulates brain cells to make more dopamine, but also interferes with the brain's ability to regulate the chemical. Consequently, a smoker's high lingers as long as 45 minutes after the nicotine has disappeared from the bloodstream. The smoker experiences a runaway feel-good sensation that the brain records in its reward center and craves again and again.

Novice smokers, however, rarely become addicted after only the first few puffs. It's repeated exposure to the substance that causes cravings. So the next step, say researchers, is to study how persistent smoking alters the brain's ability to rein in dopamine and how that ultimately contributes to nicotine addiction—a find that will offer new targets for antiaddiction drugs.

The Therion
1st June 2002, 11:59 PM
good info !

speculative
2nd June 2002, 05:05 AM
Ahem...

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Posting becomes habit-forming by hijacking the brain's pleasure pathways. But to better treat spammers, scientists need to figure out precisely how it does so. University of Chicago researchers led by postdoctoral student Huibert Mansvelder appear to have unlocked much of the mystery.

One way most bb's cause addiction when they hit the brain is by stimulating certain cells to make dopamine, the biochemical most crucial to the experience of pleasure. But according to the researchers, creating threads does a good deal more than that. Using rats, they discovered that the first time a brain is subjected to the "create thread" button, the graphics not only stimulate brain cells to make more dopamine, but also interfere with the brain's ability to regulate the chemical. Consequently, a spammer's high lingers as long as 45 minutes after the he has logged off for the night. The poster experiences a runaway feel-good sensation that the brain records in its reward center and craves again and again.

Novice posters, however, rarely become addicted after only the first few posts. It's repeated exposure to the "submit reply" and "edit post" buttons that causes cravings. So the next step, say researchers, is to study how constant posting alters the brain's ability to rein in dopamine and how that ultimately contributes to spam—a find that will offer new targets for anti-post-who4ing drugs.
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Now all I need is a patch for it...

:D

NickBrownsFan
2nd June 2002, 07:40 AM
yea a post patch perhaps Oh and watch out for those pesky :xpenguin:

gypseyman
2nd June 2002, 02:52 PM
Now what about it :rasta:? I'm of the opinion it hijacks yer entire being... Not that there's much wrong with that! :D :D :D

Meadmaker
5th June 2002, 02:53 PM
Being a smoker since 1973, I would be very grateful if the scientists can come up with a solution to the craving.

Even the thought that a months ciggies = 1 new XP2100 doesn't help me stop....:(