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Dec
2015

The neural mechanisms of heroin addiction are still incompletely understood, even though modern neuroimaging techniques offer insights into disease-related changes in vivo. While changes on cortical structure have been reported in heroin addiction, evidence from subcortical areas remains underrepresented. Functional imaging studies revealed that the brain reward system and particularly the nucleus accumbens (NAcc) play a pivotal role in the pathophysiology of drug addiction.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00406-014-0564-yDOI ListingPossible


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Nov
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Functional neuroimaging studies suggest that abnormal brain functional connectivity may be the neural underpinning of addiction to illicit drugs and of relapse after successful cessation therapy. Aberrant brain networks have been demonstrated in addicted patients and in newly abstinent addicts. However, it is not known whether abnormal brain connectivity patterns persist after prolonged abstinence.

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Feb
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A number of neuroimaging studies have shown that drug addiction is associated with morphological differences in several brain areas, including orbito-frontal and limbic structures. Most of these studies have investigated patients with addiction to cocaine. The neurobiological mechanisms which play a role in drug addiction are not fully understood, however, and the causal factors remain under investigation.

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Dec
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Heroin addiction is a severe relapsing brain disorder associated with impaired cognitive control, including deficits in attention allocation. The thalamus has a high density of opiate receptors and is critically involved in orchestrating cortical activity during cognitive control. However, there have been no studies on how acute heroin treatment modulates thalamic activity.

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Dec
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Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the nucleus accumbens (NAc) is increasingly investigated in neuropsychiatric disorders. DBS requires computer-assisted 3D planning to implant the stimulation electrode precisely. Recently, there has been a debate about the true dimensions of NAc in healthy as well as in mentally ill individuals.

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