Neuroscientists locate ‘alcoholism neurons’ in the brain

Alcohol consumption alters the structure and function of neurons in an area of the brain called the dorsomedial striatum, find scientists.Could the findings lead to a “cure” for alcoholism? The scientists say they “have pinpointed a population of neurons in the brain that influences whether one drink leads to two, which could ultimately lead to a cure for alcoholism and other addictions.” The study has been published in The Journal of Neuroscience by researchers from the Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine in Bryan. The dorsomedial striatum is a region of the brain that drives goal-directed behaviors, and alcohol resulted in “persistent alterations of neuronal morphology” there. The study concludes: “Furthermore, we show that these alterations occur only in a subpopulation of neurons that positively control reward and…


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