Negative Affect and Resumption of Drug Use: Neurobiology of Enhanced Dysphoria and Subsequent Drug Taking Following Prolonged Abstinence from Cocaine Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Haake, Rachel
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience
  • Rats exhibit negative affect to a sweet tastant that predicts delayed cocaine availability, and nucleus accumbens (NAc) neurons encode this state. Here, we examined the effects of cocaine abstinence on negative affect and drug-seeking. Rats were given 14 taste-cocaine sessions followed by 1 or 30 days of abstinence and a 3-phase test: 1) tastant deliveries, 2) extinction, 3) cocaine self-administration, with NAc activity and affective responses to the taste measured on days 1, 14 and test. Results showed that 30 days of abstinence led to an enhancement of negative affect and a decline in NAc activity during tastant infusion that re-emerged during drug-seeking. Further, greater aversion to the drug-paired tastant before abstinence was associated with increased self-administration following 30-day abstinence. These findings show that drug-induced dysphoria is enhanced following prolonged cocaine abstinence, and that NAc encoding is dynamic, dampening as negative affect is enhanced, but re-engaging during drug-seeking and taking.
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  • In Copyright
  • Thiele, Todd
  • Carelli, Regina
  • Lysle, Donald
  • Master of Arts
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2017

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