Effects of Nicotine on Brain Development Massena NY

Researchers have found that nicotine, the addictive component in cigarettes, "tricks" the brain into creating memory associations between environmental cues and smoking behavior. This could help explain why former smokers miss lighting up when they are in a bar or after a meal.

Local Companies

Jaroslaw L Koberda, MD
315-265-1452
6604 State Highway 56
Potsdam, NY
Couldwell William MD
(914) 493-8392
Medical Ctr
Valhalla, NY
Malkin Elfrida Shandar Neurologist Pediatric
(845) 348-0711
90 N Broadway
Nyack, NY
Kingston Neurological Associates PC
(845) 565-5550
407 Gidney Ave
Newburgh, NY
Vertino Michael L
(315) 464-4243
750 E Adams St
Syracuse, NY
Jaroslaw Koberda
(315) 265-1452
6604 State Highway 56
Potsdam, NY
Allan Jacobs, MD
315-265-1721
70 Market St Ste 4
Potsdam, NY
Hudson Valley Neurosurgical Assoc
(845) 291-7225
30 Matthews St
Goshen, NY
Neurosurgeons of Ny
(914) 948-9332
222 Westchester Ave
White Plains, NY
Kalonaros George C
(716) 631-3555
325 Essjay Rd
Buffalo, NY
Data Provided by:
  

Provided By:

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 9 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers have found that nicotine, the addictive component in cigarettes, "tricks" the brain into creating memory associations between environmental cues and smoking behavior. This could help explain why former smokers miss lighting up when they are in a bar or after a meal.

The findings from researchers at Baylor College of Medicine are in the Sept. 10 issue of the journal Neuron.

"Our brains normally make these associations between things that support our existence and environmental cues so that we conduct behaviors leading to successful lives. The brain sends a reward signal when we act in a way that contributes to our well being," study co-author Dr. John A. Dani, professor of neuroscience at BCM said in a college news release. "However, nicotine commandeers this subconscious learning process in the brain so we begin to behave as though smoking is a positive action."

Dani said that environmental events linked with smoking can become cues that prompt the smoking urge. Those cues could include alcohol, a meal with friends or even the drive home from work.

Dani and Dr. Jianrong Tang, instructor of neuroscience at BCM and co-author of the report, recorded the brain activity of mice as they were exposed to nicotine.

The mice were allowed to roam through an apparatus with two compartments. In one compartment, they received nicotine. In the other, they got a saline solution. The researchers recorded how long the mice spent in each compartment and brain activity within the hippocampus, an area of the brain that creates new memories.

"The brain activity change was just amazing," Dani said. "Compared to injections of saline, nicotine strengthened neuronal connections -- sometimes up to 200 percent. This strengthening of connections underlies new memory formation."

Dani said understanding mechanisms that create memory could have implications in future research and treatments for memory disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, and for dopamine signaling disorders, such as Parkinson's disease.

More information

The National Institutes of Health has more information on nicotine here.

SOURCE: Baylor College of Medicine, news release, Sept. 9, 2009

Copyright © 2009 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.

Read Article at HealthDay.com

Related Articles
- Protein and Brain Circuitry Massena NY
naturally occurring protein plays a role in the disrupted functioning of the brain's reward circuitry seen in people with drug and alcohol dependence, says a new study. "If we can understand how the brain's circuitry changes in association with drug abuse, it could potentially suggest ways to medically counteract the effects of dependency," Scott Steffensen, a study co-author and a neuroscientist at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, said in a news release.
- Anxiety Disorders Massena NY
- Quitting Smoking Tips Massena NY
- Nicotine Addiction Massena NY
- Benefits of Krill Oil Massena NY
- Dangers of Underage Drinking Massena NY
- Quit Smoking Aids Massena NY
- Omega-3 Benefits and Effects Massena NY
- DHA for Increasing Cognitive Skills in Infants Massena NY
- Stop Smoking Aids Massena NY