Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Faulty Biological Clocks May Influence Addiction

Date:
August 7, 2005
Source:
Northwestern University
Summary:
A gene that regulates the body's circadian rhythms, including sleep and wakefulness, body temperature, hormone levels, blood pressure and heart activity, may also play a central role in drug addiction, according to a recent study published online by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

EVANSTON, Ill. --- A gene that regulates the body's circadian rhythms, including sleep and wakefulness, body temperature, hormone levels, blood pressure and heart activity, may also play a central role in drug addiction, according to a recent study published online by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Related Articles


Although expressed primarily in the brain's circadian command center, biological clock genes have also been found in areas of the brain involved in reward and addiction.

A team led by researchers from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and including Northwestern University's Joseph S. Takahashi, Walter and Mary Elizabeth Glass Professor in the Life Sciences and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, used mice lacking the Clock gene to examine the possible involvement of the biological clock system in the rewarding properties of cocaine. (In 1997, Takahashi led the team that cloned Clock, the first mammalian circadian gene to be cloned.)

In the study, mice that lacked the Clock gene were injected with cocaine. Not only did the mice experience problems with their circadian cycles -- not sleeping as much and becoming more hyperactive -- they also found cocaine more rewarding than control mice, demonstrated by their strong preference for the location where the drug was administered.

In addition, Clock-deficient mice produced more dopamine than control mice did, suggesting that the gene controlling circadian rhythms is a key regulator of the brain's reward system and may influence the addictive properties of drugs such as cocaine. (Dopamine is a neurotransmitter associated with the "pleasure system" of the brain, providing feelings of enjoyment from certain activities.)

In addition to Takahashi, other authors on the PNAS paper are lead author Colleen A. McClung, M.D., senior author Eric J. Nestler, M.D., and Donald Cooper, M.D., of UT Southwestern; Martha Vitaterna of Northwestern University; Kyriaki Sidiropoulou of the University of Crete in Heraklion; and Francis J. White of the Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science.

The study was supported by grants from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the National Institute of Mental Health and the Onassis Public Benefit Foundation.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Northwestern University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Northwestern University. "Faulty Biological Clocks May Influence Addiction." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 August 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050805180443.htm>.
Northwestern University. (2005, August 7). Faulty Biological Clocks May Influence Addiction. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050805180443.htm
Northwestern University. "Faulty Biological Clocks May Influence Addiction." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/08/050805180443.htm (accessed December 21, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) — It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) — More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) — In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) — The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins