Brain-gut connection may reveal way to prevent cocaine addiction

Cocaine disrupts the balance of microbes in the guts of mice, part of a cycle of waxing and waning neurochemicals that can enhance the drug’s effects in the brain. But the same chemicals may also be harnessed to prevent addiction, according to new research from the University of Wisconsin–Madison.Cocaine increases levels of a hormone called norepinephrine in users’ intestines, triggering an explosion of growth of proteobacteria, a family of microbes that includes the common and sometimes harmful bacterium E.

Human Cocaine and Heroin Addiction Is Found Tied to Impairments in Specific Brain Circuit Initially Implicated in Animals

Study results suggest the pre-frontal cortex-habenula circuit is potentially amenable for targeted interventions and prevention.

WVU pharmaceutical experts caution ‘one pill can kill’ as new forms of fentanyl become more prevalent

Faculty members with the West Virginia University School of Pharmacy are issuing warnings about the rise of fentanyl in Mountain State communities and elsewhere following the recent seizure of a large amount of “rainbow fentanyl,” potent illegal pills resembling candy, by law enforcement officers in Monongalia County.

UCLA researchers use artificial intelligence tools to speed critical information on drug overdose deaths

Fast data processing of overdose deaths, which have increased in recent years, is crucial to developing a rapid public health response. But the system now in place lacks precision and takes months. To correct that, UCLA researchers have developed an automated process that reduces data collection to a few weeks.

Study of pre-teens yields surprises about alcohol, tobacco and marijuana

They may only be in 4th or 5th grade, but 1 in 10 pre-teen children already say they’re curious about using alcohol or tobacco products, and 1 in 50 say they’re curious about using marijuana, a new study shows.
As many as 3% of the nearly 12,000 9- and 10-year-olds surveyed say they already have a friend who uses one of these substances. And those who said they did were also much more likely to be curious about trying alcohol or tobacco and other nicotine-containing products themselves.

Chula Researchers Find Extensive amounts of THC in Cannabis-Flavored Drinks The Public Is Cautioned and the Government Urged to Impose Stricter Control

Research work of a biochemistry expert at Chulalongkorn University finds that over 30% of cannabis-flavored drinks randomly tested contain higher THC levels than what is permitted. The public is warned to keep their consumption to moderate levels and that children should refrain from drinking this beverage. The government should control its consumption and warn the people of the benefit and harm of cannabis.

Disparities in opioid treatment access remain for women, Black and Hispanic people

Buprenorphine is a prescription approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that effectively treats opioid dependence or addiction. But women, as well as Black and Hispanic populations, do not have equal access to this potentially lifesaving medication, new Mayo Clinic research finds.

Medication that lowers risk of overdose underused

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and Saint Louis University found that less than half of Americans who received treatment for opioid use disorder over a five-year period were offered a potentially lifesaving medication. The numbers were even lower for those with what’s known as polysubstance use disorder — when opioid users also misuse other substances.

Mechanisms of addiction: Psychology professor receives NIH grant for brain research

A five-year, $2.59 million grant from the National Institutes of Health will allow a psychology professor at Binghamton University, State University of New York to study the mechanisms of addiction.

Addiction Expert and Health Equity Advocate Joins the Department of Psychiatry at NYU Langone Health

Ayana Jordan, MD, PhD, a renowned expert in addiction and other mental health conditions in underserved populations, has joined NYU Langone Health’s Department of Psychiatry as the Barbara Wilson Associate Professor of Psychiatry.

Old Habit-Controlling Neurons May Also Help the Brain Learn New Tricks

In a study of rodents, scientists at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai discovered that a part of the brain traditionally thought to control typing the old habits may also play a critical role in learning the new actions. The results, published on August 25th in Nature Communications, suggest that this process involves a delicate balance in the activity of two neighboring neural circuits: one dedicated to new actions and the other to old habits

How Adolescents Used Drugs During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Among adolescents ages 10 to 14 in the U.S, the overall rate of drug use remained relatively stable in the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, one change was a decreased use of alcohol, but an increased use of nicotine and misuse of prescription drugs.

Study Finds Improvement for Those Receiving Medication for Opioid Use Disorder With Contingency Management Used

A systematic review and meta-analysis found that using contingency management (CM) at end-of-treatment improved outcomes on six common clinical problems during medication for OUD (MOUD): psychomotor stimulant use, polysubstance use, illicit-opioid use, cigarette smoking, therapy attendance, and medication adherence.

Graphic Warning Labels on Cigarette Packaging Changes Perceptions

A Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science at University of California San Diego clinical trial showed that graphic warning labels on cigarette packaging changes perceptions of smokers to recognize the negative consequences of tobacco and consider quitting.

Four themes identified as contributors to diseases of despair in Pennsylvania

Hershey, Pa. — Financial instability, lack of infrastructure, a deteriorating sense of community and family fragmentation are key contributors to diseases of despair in Pennsylvania communities, according to Penn State College of Medicine and Highmark Health researchers. The researchers conducted…

Co-locating Contraceptive Services & Opioid Treatment Programs May Help Prevent Unintended Pregnancy

More than 75% of women with Opioid Use Disorder report having had an unintended pregnancy, but they are less likely to use effective contraception compared to women who do not use drugs. Results from a multi-year trial found that a two-part intervention featuring co-located contraceptive services in opioid treatment programs and financial incentives could offer an effective solution.

Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE) to Release Results from National Survey of Peer Recovery Coaches at Webinar on Understanding and Bolstering the Recovery Workforce

The Foundation for Opioid Response Efforts (FORE) will host a webinar on Understanding and Bolstering the Recovery Workforce and release results from the qualitative portion of its first-ever national surgery of peer recovery coaches. The webinar will take place on Wednesday, July 14, 2021, from 3pm to 4:30pm EST.