Neurobiology of Addiction


  • George Koob, The Scripps Research Institute, La Jolla, CA, USA
  • Michel Le Moal, Neurocentre Magendie Inserm U862, Universite´ Victor Segalen – Bordeaux 2, Bordeaux, France

Neurobiology of Addiction is conceived as a current survey and synthesis of the most important findings in our understanding of the neurobiological mechanisms of addiction over the past 50 years. The book includes a scholarly introduction, thorough descriptions of animal models of addiction, and separate chapters on the neurobiological mechanisms of addiction for psychostimulants, opioids, alcohol, nicotine and cannabinoids. Key information is provided about the history, sources, and pharmacokinetics and psychopathology of addiction of each drug class, as well as the behavioral and neurobiological mechanism of action for each drug class at the molecular, cellular and neurocircuitry level of analysis. A chapter on neuroimaging and drug addiction provides a synthesis of exciting new data from neuroimaging in human addicts — a unique perspective unavailable from animal studies. The final chapters explore theories of addiction at the neurobiological and neuroadaptational level both from a historical and integrative perspective. The book incorporates diverse finding with an emphasis on integration and synthesis rather than discrepancies or differences in the literature.
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Graduate students and professionals in neuroscience, neurology, psychology.


Book information

  • Published: November 2005
  • ISBN: 978-0-12-419239-3


"Competent, comprehensive, and extensively referenced, the book is clearly appropriate for researchers in the field. However, what sets it apart from other books... are the synthetic chapters, which constitute a remarkably cogent introduction to addiction, a detailed general discussion of animal models of addiction, thoughtful descriptions of competing neurobiologic theories of addiction, and a translational chapter in which recent findings on neuroimaging are considered and linked to the more fundamental concepts previously used to examine the neurocircuitry of addiction." --Peter R. Martin, Vanderbilt University Medical School, NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE (October 19, 2006) "In an impressive and weighty new work, Koob and LeMoal assimilate several thousand references to provide a state-of-the-science proclamation of this progress, while setting our sights for its crucial next phases. ...The Neurobiology of Addiction is a thought provoking tour de force. I expect it to become an instant classic and for future editions to gauge our progress in this exciting and compelling field." --Trevor Robbins, Department of Experimental Psychology at the Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute, University of Cambridge in NATURE NEUROSCIENCE (August 2006; Vol 9:8) "Neurobiology of Addiction is a major achievement and will rapidly become a must-have book on the shelves of addiction researchers... Although it includes much with which readers will disagree and argue, there is also much to relish in Koob and Le Moal’s thought-provoking and scholarly text." --Barry Everitt, U Cambridge in SCIENCE (Vol 314: 6 October 2006) "With the evidence accumulated in this volume, it is reasonable to discuss addiction as a brain disorder, with significant implications for the directions of research, treatment, and prevention. This text provides us with the state of the art from leading experts at a leading addiction research center. ...It is clearly the very best textbook we could have hoped for..." --Mark S. Gold and Daniel Logan in PsycCRITIQUES: AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION REVIEW OF BOOKS (November 8, 2006)

Table of Contents

1. What is Addiction. 2. Animal Models of Drug Addiction. 3. Psychostimulants. 4. Opioids. 5. Alcohol. 6. Nicotine. 7. Cannabinoids. 8. Imaging. 9. Neurobiological Theories of Addiction. 10. Drug Addiction: Transition from Neuroadaptation to Pathophysiology.