The science of making drug-addicted animals.

S.H. Ahmed
Neuroscience. 2012-06-01; 211: 107-125
DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2011.08.014

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1. Neuroscience. 2012 Jun 1;211:107-25. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2011.08.014.
Epub 2011 Aug 10.

The science of making drug-addicted animals.

Ahmed SH(1).

Author information:
(1)Université de Bordeaux, Institut des Maladies Neurodégénératives/CNRS UMR
5293, F-33000 Bordeaux, France.

Research involving animal models of drug addiction can be viewed as a sort of
reverse psychiatry. Contrary to clinicians who seek to treat addicted people to
become and remain abstinent, researchers seek to make drug-naïve animals addicted
to a drug with known addictive properties in humans. The goals of this research
are to better understand the neuroscience of drug addiction and, ultimately, to
translate this knowledge into effective treatments for people with addiction. The
present review will not cover the vast literature that has accumulated over the
past 50 years on animal models of drug addiction. It is instead more modestly
devoted to recent research spanning the past decade on drug
self-administration-based models of addiction in the rat (the animal species most
frequently used in the field), with a special focus on current efforts to model
compulsive cocaine use as opposed to nonaddictive use. Surprisingly, it turns out
that modeling compulsive cocaine use in rats is possible but more difficult than
previously thought. In fact, it appears that resilience to cocaine addiction is
the norm in rats. As in human cocaine users, only few individual rats would be
vulnerable. This conclusion has several important implications for future
research on the neuroscience of cocaine addiction and on preclinical medication
development.

Copyright © 2012 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

DOI: 10.1016/j.neuroscience.2011.08.014
PMID: 21864653 [Indexed for MEDLINE]


Auteurs Bordeaux Neurocampus