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Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med. 2012 Oct 1;2(10). pii: a011957. doi: 10.1101/cshperspect.a011957.

Mechanisms of psychostimulant-induced structural plasticity.

Author information

1
Department of Neuroscience and The Friedman Brain Institute, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, New York 10029, USA.

Abstract

Psychostimulants robustly induce alterations in neuronal structural plasticity throughout brain reward circuits. However, despite our extensive understanding of how these circuits modulate motivated behavior, it is still unclear whether structural plasticity within these regions drives pathological behavioral responses in addiction. Although these structural changes have been subjected to an exhaustive phenomenological characterization, we still have a limited understanding of the molecular mechanisms regulating their induction and the functional relevance of such changes in mediating addiction-like behavior. Here we have highlighted the known molecular pathways and intracellular signaling cascades that regulate psychostimulant-induced changes in neuronal morphology and synaptic restructuring, and we discuss them in the larger context of addiction behavior.

PMID:
22935995
PMCID:
PMC3475397
DOI:
10.1101/cshperspect.a011957
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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