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Pharmacol Biochem Behav. 2008 Jul;90(1):74-89. doi: 10.1016/j.pbb.2008.01.001. Epub 2008 Jan 12.

Abuse and dependence liability of benzodiazepine-type drugs: GABA(A) receptor modulation and beyond.

Author information

1
McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Behavioral Psychopharmacology Research Laboratory, 115 Mill Street, Belmont, MA 02478, United States. slicata@mclean.harvard.edu

Abstract

Over the past several decades, benzodiazepines and the newer non-benzodiazepines have become the anxiolytic/hypnotics of choice over the more readily abused barbiturates. While all drugs from this class act at the GABA(A) receptor, benzodiazepine-type drugs offer the clear advantage of being safer and better tolerated. However, there is still potential for these drugs to be abused, and significant evidence exists to suggest that this is a growing problem. This review examines the behavioral determinants of the abuse and dependence liability of benzodiazepine-type drugs. Moreover, the pharmacological and putative biochemical basis of the abuse-related behavior is discussed.

PMID:
18295321
PMCID:
PMC2453238
DOI:
10.1016/j.pbb.2008.01.001
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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