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Mol Cells. 2008 Aug 31;26(2):121-30. Epub 2008 Jun 30.

Gene expression profiling of the rewarding effect caused by methamphetamine in the mesolimbic dopamine system.

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Department of Biological Science, Sookmyung Women's University, Seoul 140-742, Korea.


Methamphetamine, a commonly used addictive drug, is a powerful addictive stimulant that dramatically affects the CNS. Repeated METH administration leads to a rewarding effect in a state of addiction that includes sensitization, dependence, and other phenomena. It is well known that susceptibility to the development of addiction is influenced by sources of reinforcement, variable neuroadaptive mechanisms, and neurochemical changes that together lead to altered homeostasis of the brain reward system. These behavioral abnormalities reflect neuroadaptive changes in signal transduction function and cellular gene expression produced by repeated drug exposure. To provide a better understanding of addiction and the mechanism of the rewarding effect, it is important to identify related genes. In the present study, we performed gene expression profiling using microarray analysis in a reward effect animal model. We also investigated gene expression in four important regions of the brain, the nucleus accumbens, striatum, hippocampus, and cingulated cortex, and analyzed the data by two clustering methods. Genes related to signaling pathways including G-protein-coupled receptor-related pathways predominated among the identified genes. The genes identified in our study may contribute to the development of a gene modeling network for methamphetamine addiction.

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