Oklahoma Department of Corrections
|May 26, 2009 (b)||
So to speak. Here are a number of research reports associated with drug use and possible ways to affect it. This one details a brain imaging study that showed the way brain activity in cocaine users differs from activity in non-users. Here’s why that’s important:
“"Many studies have found decreased brain activity in drug-addicted individuals relative to healthy control subjects during psychological tests," said lead author Rita Goldstein, a psychologist at Brookhaven Lab. "But it's never been clear if these differences were due to varying levels of interest or ability between the two groups. This is the first study to look at two groups matched for performance and interest — and we still see dramatic differences in the brain regions that play a very significant role in the ability to monitor behavior and regulate emotion, which are both important to resisting drug use.
"Whether these brain differences are an underlying cause or a consequence of addiction, the brain regions involved should be considered targets for new kinds of treatments aimed at improving function and self-regulatory control," Goldstein said.”
And here’s a report on a meta-analysis that indicates that, contrary to popular belief, pot can cause addictive behaviors, especially in heavy users (people who use a lot, not people who are overweight). Not as bad as other drugs and along the same lines as gambling, apparently, but still enough that this comes as good news to those negatively affected who have frequently been told that their personal problems couldn’t be associated with their pot use.
Here’s an odd little story about the difference between “obvious intoxication” and “visible intoxication” and the impact not knowing that difference can have, both for the intoxicated and those trying to rein them in. And a good news story about “happy hour,” which in this case is the name of a gene in fruit flies that affects the flies’ susceptibility to alcohol effects. Seems that there is a cancer-fighting drug that can apparently simulate the impact of the gene (read the article) and give insight into the process of addiction and perhaps come up with ways to relieve or stop it. Fruit flies are rejoicing, with non-alcoholic beverages. Why this is important to humans is, first, past research has shown that we and the flies are more alike than we may appear in the mirror and, second, other research has shown that young people with high tolerance for alcohol have much greater probabilities of becoming alcoholics in the future than those who get silly quickly on it. So remember: good news for fruit flies is good news for us. (Here’s a story about a kid in Montana who found out the hard way.)
|Title:||While We’re on Drugs|
|Corrections News :: Monthly Archive :: Recent Articles :: Topical Archive :: Oklahoma Department of Corrections|