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Nicotine metabolism linked with chronic alcohol abuse may contribute to poor smoking cessation rates

Nicotine metabolism linked with chronic alcohol abuse may contribute to poor smoking cessation rates

For smokers who are addicted to alcohol, chronic alcohol abuse may increase the rate of nicotine metabolism and contribute to poor smoking cessation rates. When smokers stop drinking the nicotine metabolism rates decline significantly, according to a study conducted by an international research team led by Roswell Park Cancer Institute. The research was a collaboration of scientists from Roswell Park, the University of California, San Francisco, and the Medical University of Silesia and Center of Addiction Treatment in Poland. [More]
New study reveals increased risk of dementia in patients with rosacea

New study reveals increased risk of dementia in patients with rosacea

A new study has uncovered an increased risk of dementia--in particular Alzheimer's disease--in patients with rosacea. Importantly, the risk was highest in older patients and in patients where rosacea was diagnosed by a hospital dermatologist. The findings are published in the Annals of Neurology, a journal of the American Neurological Association and Child Neurology Society. [More]
New rat study shows specific genetic factors may contribute to differences in addiction among humans

New rat study shows specific genetic factors may contribute to differences in addiction among humans

Why does one person who tries cocaine get addicted, while another might use it and then leave it alone? Why do some people who kick a drug habit manage to stay clean, while others relapse? And why do some families seem more prone to addiction than others? [More]
Innovations in pre-clinical MRI: an interview with Priv. Doz. Dr. Dominik von Elverfeldt

Innovations in pre-clinical MRI: an interview with Priv. Doz. Dr. Dominik von Elverfeldt

To me the most exciting aspect of pre-clinical imaging is its broad range, from very basic science up to applied science. You deal with a range of disciplines including biology, chemistry, physics, biochemistry, biophysics, cell biology and of course medicine, as the aim is the translation of research to humans. [More]
E-cigarette use can potentially reduce deaths from cigarette smoking

E-cigarette use can potentially reduce deaths from cigarette smoking

Seven top international tobacco control experts are prompting regulators at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to have a broad "open-minded" perspective when it comes to regulating vaporized nicotine products, especially e-cigarettes. [More]
Motivational interviewing can help reduce risky use of pain pills

Motivational interviewing can help reduce risky use of pain pills

As America battles an epidemic of deaths from misused pain pills, a new study suggests an inexpensive way to cut risky use of these drugs by people who have a high chance of overdosing. [More]
Drugs that block NOTCH signaling in many cancers could be effective against ACC

Drugs that block NOTCH signaling in many cancers could be effective against ACC

Using a novel cell culture approach, Yale Cancer Center researchers have discovered critical vulnerabilities in adenoid cystic carcinoma (ACC), a rare and lethal glandular cancer with a high recurrence rate and few treatment options. [More]
Caltech researchers map out pathways of neurons responsible for Parkinson's motor impairments

Caltech researchers map out pathways of neurons responsible for Parkinson's motor impairments

Because billions of neurons are packed into our brain, the neuronal circuits that are responsible for controlling our behaviors are by necessity highly intermingled. This tangled web makes it complicated for scientists to determine exactly which circuits do what. Now, using two laboratory techniques pioneered in part at Caltech, Caltech researchers have mapped out the pathways of a set of neurons responsible for the kinds of motor impairments--such as difficulty walking--found in patients with Parkinson's disease. [More]
FDA expands campaign to educate rural, white male teens about dangers of smokeless tobacco use

FDA expands campaign to educate rural, white male teens about dangers of smokeless tobacco use

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced today it is expanding its award-winning "The Real Cost" campaign to educate rural, white male teenagers about the negative health consequences associated with smokeless tobacco use. For the first time, messages on the dangers of smokeless tobacco use – including nicotine addiction, gum disease, tooth loss, and multiple kinds of cancer – are being highlighted through the placement of advertisements in 35 U.S. markets specifically selected to reach the campaign's target audience. [More]
Research finds high prevalence of smoking, low cessation rates in people with schizophrenia

Research finds high prevalence of smoking, low cessation rates in people with schizophrenia

Smoking addiction in schizophrenia can be explained by significantly increased activation of the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), a region involved in the brain reward system. These new data, the result of a study by researchers at the Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal and the University of Montreal confirms the tendency to smoke and low smoking cessation rates of people with schizophrenia. [More]
Scientists identify key pathway that regulates 'switch' between wakefulness and sleep

Scientists identify key pathway that regulates 'switch' between wakefulness and sleep

Falling asleep and waking up are key transitions in everyone's day. Millions of people have trouble with these transitions - they find it hard to fall asleep or stay asleep at night, and hard to stay awake during the day. Despite decades of research, how these transitions work - the neurobiological mechanics of our circadian rhythm - has remained largely a mystery to brain scientists. [More]
Heavy marijuana use may lead to lower dopamine release in the brain

Heavy marijuana use may lead to lower dopamine release in the brain

In a recent study, researchers found evidence of a compromised dopamine system in heavy users of marijuana. Lower dopamine release was found in the striatum - a region of the brain that is involved in working memory, impulsive behavior, and attention. Previous studies have shown that addiction to other drugs of abuse, such as cocaine and heroin, have similar effects on dopamine release, but such evidence for cannabis was missing until now. [More]
Hospitals could reduce burden of alcohol-related liver disease through universal screening procedure

Hospitals could reduce burden of alcohol-related liver disease through universal screening procedure

The growing burden of alcohol-related liver disease (ARLD) could be reduced if hospitals introduced a simple universal screening procedure for those attending acute and emergency hospital settings, according to a new study shared today at The International Liver Congress in Barcelona, Spain. [More]
Monetary incentives aid smoking cessation among pregnant, post-partum women

Monetary incentives aid smoking cessation among pregnant, post-partum women

Smoking during pregnancy is the leading preventable cause of poor pregnancy outcomes. Studies further indicate that in-utero smoke exposure contributes to respiratory and cardiac illnesses later in life. [More]
Electrical stimulation of deep brain structures to ease chronic pain

Electrical stimulation of deep brain structures to ease chronic pain

Abuse of prescription opioid medicines used to treat chronic pain has reached epidemic proportions, so much that the White House has announced new efforts to combat addiction and prevent the thousands of overdose-related deaths reported in the U.S. each year. [More]
Psychedelic compounds could treat patients with mental health issues

Psychedelic compounds could treat patients with mental health issues

Psychedelic compounds have had a colorful past. Although initially investigated for medical uses, they were banned after cultural and political times changed in the 1960s and 1970s. Now, the compounds are getting another chance in the mainstream, according to the cover story of Chemical & Engineering News, the weekly news magazine of the American Chemical Society. [More]
Naltrexone injections could reduce risk of relapse among opioid dependent individuals

Naltrexone injections could reduce risk of relapse among opioid dependent individuals

In a multicenter, randomized clinical trial, ex-prisoners who received six monthly injections of naltrexone--a long-acting medication that blocks opioid receptors in the brain--were significantly less likely to resume opioid use than those who received counseling and referrals to community treatment centers without naltrexone. [More]
Opioids could be dangerous, deadly at high doses

Opioids could be dangerous, deadly at high doses

Most people know that heroin is a dangerous drug, but its cousins, the legal, pharmaceutical opioids, such as codeine or hydrocodone, must be safe, right?Not so fast.Opioids—which include the illegal drug heroin as well as prescription medications, including hydrocodone (such as Vicodin), oxycodone (such as OxyContin and Percocet), morphine and codeine—can be dangerous, even deadly, at high doses. [More]
MGH study finds that the brains of young marijuana users react differently to social exclusion

MGH study finds that the brains of young marijuana users react differently to social exclusion

A study from Massachusetts General Hospital researchers finds that the brains of young adult marijuana users react differently to social exclusion than do those of non-users. In a report published in the March issue of Biological Psychiatry: Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuroimaging, the team reports that activation of the insula, a region of the brain that is usually active during social rejection, was reduced in young marijuana users when they were being excluded from participation in virtual game of catch. [More]
Restrictions to opioid prescription block their use for safe, effective pain relief

Restrictions to opioid prescription block their use for safe, effective pain relief

Opioids are very effective for treating some types of pain, such as cancer pain and postoperative pain, but not for other kinds of pain like chronic low back pain. An increase in the number of opioid-related deaths among addicts has led to the current movement to restrict opioid prescribing by state and federal authorities. [More]
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