Research Topic

Neuroplastic changes in addiction

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Addiction is a chronic relapsing disorder, which comprises impulsive and compulsive elements. Chronic drug consumption leads to long-term neuroadaptive changes in the brain thus result in an addictive state. However, development of addiction is a complex interaction between genetic, epigenetic and ...

Addiction is a chronic relapsing disorder, which comprises impulsive and compulsive elements. Chronic drug consumption leads to long-term neuroadaptive changes in the brain thus result in an addictive state. However, development of addiction is a complex interaction between genetic, epigenetic and environmental factors. The resulting cellular and molecular changes mediate the transition from controlled drug use to the loss of control over drug-taking and drug-seeking.
The human association studies helped us to identify some important genetic factors responsible for the susceptibility to addiction. However, social, environmental circumstances highly influence the development of addiction. Using animal models helps us to examine the underlying neuronal/molecular processes under standardised conditions.
The aim of this Research Topic is to summarize our knowledge about the neuroplastic changes, which contribute to the maintenance of drug taking. Data presented in this Research Topic should also provide evidences how acute and long-term neuronal changes during withdrawal result in relapse. How different neuromodulators like endocannabinoids and endogenous opioids contribute to molecular mechanisms that mediate the transition from the controlled, occasional drug consumption to the uncontrolled, escalating drug use and seeking.


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