D. J. K. Balfour, C. S. Birch

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary


    This article summarizes evidence that the psychomotor stimulant and addictive properties of nicotine are mediated by stimulation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors located on or close to the dopamine (DA)-secreting neurons which innervate the nucleus accumbens. This stimulation increases DA overflow within the core and shell subdivisions of the accumbens. The shell is thought to mediate the reinforcing properties of the drug itself, whereas the core is thought to mediate the effects which conditioned stimuli contribute to nicotine-seeking behavior. The article also considers the putative role that the anti-anxiety and antidepressant properties of nicotine may play in the development of addiction.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of neuroscience
    EditorsLarry R. Squire
    Place of PublicationLondon
    PublisherAcademic Press
    Number of pages7
    ISBN (Print)9780080450469
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


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