Drug abuse and addiction
Drug addiction involves a progressive loss of behavioral control. A major goal of our research is to determine how drugs impact the brain to produce compulsive drug-seeking behavior. Research has demonstrated that repeated intake of abused drugs such as cocaine and morphine not only alters the way those drugs are processed by the brain but can also alter the function of neural systems responsible for learning, motivation, and other aspects of behavioral control. We are particularly interested in developing and refining experimental methods for characterizing the behavioral consequences of repeated drug intake and applying these tools to identify and characterize neuroadaptations involved in the addiction process.
This project is funded by NIDA Grant R01DA029035