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The mesocorticolimbic dopamine system is believed to be involved in mediating the positive reinforcing effects of drugs of abuse, including ethanol. The nicotinic acetylcholine receptor antagonist mecamylamine perfused via reversed microdialysis in the ventral tegmental area antagonizes the increase of accumbal extracellular dopamine levels after systemic(More)
Here we review recent advances that identify a role for the central ghrelin signalling system in reward from both natural rewards (such as food) and artificial rewards (that include alcohol and drugs of abuse). Whereas ghrelin emerged as a stomach-derived hormone involved in energy balance, hunger and meal initiation via hypothalamic circuits, it now seems(More)
Ghrelin stimulates appetite, increases food intake and causes adiposity by mechanisms that include direct actions on the brain. Previously, we showed that intracerebroventricular administration of ghrelin has stimulatory and dopamine-enhancing properties. These effects of ghrelin are mediated via central nicotine receptors, suggesting that ghrelin can(More)
The stomach-derived hormone ghrelin interacts with key CNS circuits regulating energy balance and body weight. Here we provide evidence that the central ghrelin signaling system is required for alcohol reward. Central ghrelin administration (to brain ventricles or to tegmental areas involved in reward) increased alcohol intake in a 2-bottle (alcohol/water)(More)
The most commonly abused drugs, alcohol and nicotine, are likely also the most costly drugs in terms of health and societal costs. A large body of evidence from epidemiological studies indicate that smoking and alcohol-intake are positively correlated. The mesocorticolimbic dopamine system has been implicated in mediating some of the reinforcing effects of(More)
It has been suggested that ethanol may interact with the central nicotinic acetylcholine receptor, thus providing a basis for the often observed high consumption of both ethanol and nicotine. In the present in vivo microdialysis study, ethanol (2.5 g/kg) moderately increased dopamine overflow in the rat nucleus accumbens. The central nicotinic acetylcholine(More)
Ethanol and nicotine are the most commonly abused drugs among human beings, and a large body of evidence, from both epidemiologic and preclinical studies, indicates that there is a positive correlation between intake of both drugs. Findings of studies from our research group have demonstrated that nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, especially those located(More)
It has been suggested that ethanol exerts its mesolimbic dopamine activating effects and its reinforcing effects via interaction with central nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, thus providing a basis for the often observed covariation between ethanol and nicotine consumption. We have previously demonstrated that the central nicotinic acetylcholine receptor(More)
We investigated whether ghrelin action at the level of the ventral tegmental area (VTA), a key node in the mesolimbic reward system, is important for the rewarding and motivational aspects of the consumption of rewarding/palatable food. Mice with a disrupted gene encoding the ghrelin receptor (GHS-R1A) and rats treated peripherally with a GHS-R1A antagonist(More)
INTRODUCTION Recently we demonstrated that genetic or pharmacological suppression of the central ghrelin signaling system, involving the growth hormone secretagogue receptor 1A (GHS-R1A), lead to a reduced reward profile from alcohol. As the target circuits for ghrelin in the brain include a mesolimbic reward pathway that is intimately associated with(More)