Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Frequent tanning bed users exhibit brain changes and behavior similar to addicts, study finds

Date:
August 10, 2011
Source:
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Summary:
People who frequently use tanning beds may be spurred by an addictive neurological reward-and-reinforcement trigger, researchers have found.

People who frequently use tanning beds may be spurred by an addictive neurological reward-and-reinforcement trigger, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found in a pilot study.

Related Articles


This could explain why some people continue to use tanning beds despite the increased risk of developing melanoma, the most lethal form of skin cancer. The brain activity and corresponding blood flow tracked by UT Southwestern scientists involved in the study is similar to that seen in people addicted to drugs and alcohol.

"Using tanning beds has rewarding effects in the brain so people may feel compelled to persist in the behavior even though it's bad for them," said Dr. Bryon Adinoff, professor of psychiatry and senior author of the study available online and in a future print edition of Addiction Biology. "The implication is, 'If it's rewarding, then could it also be addictive?' It's an important question in the field."

About 120,000 new cases of melanoma are diagnosed in the U.S. each year, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. People younger than 30 who use a tanning bed 10 times a year have eight times the risk of developing malignant melanoma. While public knowledge of these dangers has grown, so has the regular use of tanning beds.

In this study, participants used tanning beds on two separate occasions: one time they were exposed to ultraviolet radiation and another time special filters blocked exposure to ultraviolet radiation. Participants did not know on which session they received the real or the filtered ultraviolet exposure. At each visit, participants were asked before and after each session how much they felt like tanning. Participants were also administered a compound that allowed scientists to measure brain blood flow while they were tanning.

Dr. Adinoff, who also is a staff physician at the Veterans Affairs North Texas Health Care System, said the next step is to create technology to further study brain changes among frequent tanners.

Other UT Southwestern researchers involved in the study were Dr. Heidi Jacobe, assistant professor of dermatology; Dr. Michael Devous, professor of radiology; and Thomas Harris, senior research scientist. Former dermatology resident Dr. Cynthia Harrington served as lead author.

The study was funded by the Department of Dermatology at UT Southwestern. Dr. Steven Feldman of Wake Forest University donated the ultraviolet radiation filters used in the tanning bed, and GE Healthcare donated the radioligand, the compound that traced the brain changes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by UT Southwestern Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Cynthia R. Harrington, Tracy C. Beswick, Michael Graves, Heidi T. Jacobe, Thomas S. Harris, Shadi Kourosh, Michael D. Devous Sr, Bryon Adinoff. Activation of the mesostriatal reward pathway with exposure to ultraviolet radiation (UVR) vs. sham UVR in frequent tanners: a pilot study. Addiction Biology, 2011; DOI: 10.1111/j.1369-1600.2010.00312.x

Cite This Page:

UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Frequent tanning bed users exhibit brain changes and behavior similar to addicts, study finds." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110810153713.htm>.
UT Southwestern Medical Center. (2011, August 10). Frequent tanning bed users exhibit brain changes and behavior similar to addicts, study finds. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110810153713.htm
UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Frequent tanning bed users exhibit brain changes and behavior similar to addicts, study finds." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110810153713.htm (accessed November 28, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, November 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

Ebola Leaves Orphans Alone in Sierra Leone

AFP (Nov. 27, 2014) — The Ebola epidemic sweeping Sierra Leone is having a profound effect on the country's children, many of whom have been left without any family members to support them. Duration: 01:02 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Newsy (Nov. 27, 2014) — A recent test of a prototype Ebola vaccine generated an immune response to the disease in subjects. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) — Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
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