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Stress increases addictive behaviors and is a common cause of relapse. Corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) plays a key role in the modulation of drug taking by stress. However, the mechanism by which CRF modulates neuronal activity in circuits involved in drug addiction is poorly understood. Here we show that CRF induces a potentiation of NMDAR(More)
Phosphorylation regulates the function of ligand-gated ion channels such as the N-methyl d-aspartate (NMDA) receptor. Here we report a mechanism for modulation of the phosphorylation state and function of the NMDA receptor via an inhibitory scaffolding protein, RACK1. We found that RACK1 binds both the NR2B subunit of the NMDA receptor and the nonreceptor(More)
Protein kinase C (PKC), a family of related serine-threonine kinases, is a key player in the cellular responses mediated by the second messenger diacylglycerol (DAG) and the phorbol ester tumor promoters. The traditional view of PKCs as DAG/phospholipid-regulated proteins has expanded in the last few years by three seminal discoveries. First, PKC activity(More)
The Bitcoin scheme is a rare example of a large scale global payment system in which all the transactions are publicly accessible (but in an anonymous way). We downloaded the full history of this scheme, and analyzed many statistical properties of its associated transaction graph. In this paper we answer for the first time a variety of interesting questions(More)
The Receptor for Activated C Kinase 1 (RACK1) is a member of the tryptophan-aspartate repeat (WD-repeat) family of proteins and shares significant homology to the β subunit of G-proteins (Gβ). RACK1 adopts a seven-bladed β-propeller structure which facilitates protein binding. RACK1 has a significant role to play in shuttling proteins around the cell,(More)
One of the major challenges in preclinical studies of alcohol abuse and dependence remains the development of paradigms that will elicit high ethanol intake and mimic the progressive transition from low or moderate social drinking to excessive alcohol consumption. Exposure of outbred rats to repeated cycles of free-choice ethanol intake and withdrawal with(More)
Alcoholism is a devastating disease that manifests as uncontrolled drinking. Consumption of alcohol is regulated by neurochemical systems within specific neural circuits, but endogenous systems that may counteract and thus suppress the behavioral effects of ethanol intake are unknown. Here we demonstrate that BDNF plays a role in reducing the behavioral(More)
Alcohol addiction manifests as uncontrolled drinking despite negative consequences. Few medications are available to treat the disorder. Anecdotal reports suggest that ibogaine, a natural alkaloid, reverses behaviors associated with addiction including alcoholism; however, because of side effects, ibogaine is not used clinically. In this study, we first(More)
We previously found that brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF)-haplodeficient mice exhibit greater ethanol-induced place preference and psychomotor sensitization, and greater ethanol consumption after deprivation, than control mice. We further observed that, in mice, voluntary ethanol intake increases BDNF expression in the dorsal striatum (DS). Here, we(More)
Compulsive drinking despite serious adverse medical, social and economic consequences is a characteristic of alcohol use disorders in humans. Although frontal cortical areas have been implicated in alcohol use disorders, little is known about the molecular mechanisms and pathways that sustain aversion-resistant intake. Here, we show that nucleus accumbens(More)