HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
UT Southwestern researchers find alterations in brain's circuitry caused by cocaine

DALLAS Oct. 21, 2005 Cocaine causes specific alterations in the brain's circuitry at a genetic level, including short-term changes that result in a high from the cocaine, as well as long-term changes seen in addiction, researchers from UT Southwestern Medical Center have found.

Such findings suggest possible new directions for treatments for addiction to the drug, they said.

In a study available online and in the Oct. 20 issue of Neuron, UT Southwestern researchers used rodents to pinpoint an important molecular mechanism that switches genes "on" in the part of the brain involved in drug-induced rewards. They also determined that cocaine, through a process called "chromatin remodeling," alters the normal biochemical processes that allow these specific genes to be turned on and off.

"Our study provides a fundamentally new level of analysis by which we can better understand the actions of cocaine in brain-reward regions at the molecular level," said senior author Dr. Eric Nestler, chairman of UT Southwestern's Department of Psychiatry. "It also points to new potential treatments for addiction."

In order for genes to be activated, or "expressed," proteins called transcription factors have to be able to access the gene and copy its instructions for making other proteins. Typically, a group of proteins called histones tightly binds genes, keeping them from being accessed by transcription factors. Normally, histones undergo chemical changes to convert them from tightly binding a gene to a state where they are less bound and no longer inhibit gene expression.

However, through chromatin remodeling or modifying the genetic material located in the cell's nucleus cocaine chemically alters histones, causing them to loosen their "grip" on certain genes and allowing transcription factors to turn the genes on, the researchers found.

"Our study was the first to examine histone changes on particular genes in brain-reward regions known to be importa
'"/>

Contact: Donna Steph Hansard
donna.hansard@utsouthwestern.edu
214-648-3404
UT Southwestern Medical Center
21-Oct-2005


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. UT Southwestern joins national clinical trial to uncover long-term effects of West Nile virus
2. UT Southwestern leaders to receive national award for medical research accomplishments
3. UT Southwestern scientist receives NIH Directors Pioneer Award
4. UT Southwestern scientist named Keck Foundation Distinguished Young Scholar in Medical Research
5. UT Southwestern researchers find gene mutation that leads to broken hearts
6. Plague agent helps UT Southwestern researchers find novel signaling system in cells
7. One of the nations first 7-Tesla magnetic resonance imaging devices for human studies planned at UT Southwestern Medical Center
8. DNA end caps may lead to cancer treatments, UT Southwestern researchers report
9. UT Southwestern scientist honored among best in Texas research
10. UT Southwestern scientist receives international award for pediatric research
11. UT Southwestern physician-researcher wins international award for lipid research

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:8/3/2020)... ... 2020 , ... Accumen Inc. is helping healthcare get better, ... Solutions, to provide COVID-19 saliva testing kits nationally. , “Accumen has been ... 10 years. Early in the COVID-19 crisis, we identified supply chain gaps and ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... ... Commercial launch readiness is a critical stage in a product life cycle. While ... global economic downturn will only increase price pressures overall for the industry. The era ... from every product launch is critical. However, history shows that only a third of ...
(Date:7/2/2020)... ... July 02, 2020 , ... ... announced a publication detailing the use of its revolutionary NEXTGENPCR endpoint thermocycler ... (RT-PCR) in 16 minutes. The article, titled "Ultra-fast one-step RT-PCR protocol for ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... July 16, 2020 , ... After research model surgery and catheter implantation, the ... is only the beginning of a successful study, while protecting and accessing the catheter ... Global Head of Surgery from Envigo in a live webinar ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 09, 2020 , ... PathSensors Inc., ... has expanded the company’s exclusive license to include clinical applications for CANARY™ ... market, focusing initially on the SARS-CoV-2 biosensor. CANARY’s™ fast and highly ...
(Date:7/1/2020)... ... 29, 2020 , ... MedShift , a leading medical ... many obstacles created as a result of COVID-19. As a provider at the ... practices and medical manufacturers by expanding access to device offerings, technology services, and ...
(Date:6/28/2020)... HILL, Conn. (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2020 ... ... company formed to advance photodynamic therapy for treating cancer, today announced the company ... New York (“Roswell Park”). The agreement provides Lumeda globally exclusive rights to ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: