The Potential Role of Dopaminergic Neuromodulation in Adolescence

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Book Chapter

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adolescence, dopaminergic neuromodulation, drug abuse, drug addiction, at risk populations, cocaine


Adolescence is a period when the brain is undergoing many complex changes that can exert long-term influences on decision making and cognitive processes. It is also a period of experimentation. Adolescents demonstrate a more abrupt progression of illicit drug use and development of substance use disorders than adults, suggesting that this ontogenetic period renders the adolescent more vulnerable to addiction. Development of the central nervous system (CNS) during adolescence may play a key role in the increased likelihood to initiate drug use. Topics discussed in this chapter include theories of addiction (anhedonia hypothesis; abberant learning theory; and incentive-sensitization theory); novelty preference and impulse control; conditioned place preference; mesolimbic dopamine (DA) pathway and reward; cocaine and mesolimbic DA system; mesolimbic DA pathway and behavior during adolescence; and impact of cocaine during adolescence.

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Citation / Publisher Attribution

The Potential Role of Dopaminergic Neuromodulation in Adolescence, in E. B. Darlon (Ed.), Adolescent Behavior Research Advances, Nova Biomedical Books, p. 1-25