Lecture 9.docx - STATE-DEPENDENT LEARNING Phenomenon where...

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STATE-DEPENDENT LEARNING - Phenomenon where if you learn something in a specific state, its hard to remember if you’re not again in the same state - Typical with nicotine and caffeine: learned something with drug on board harder to remember without drug on board - Not just about drugs. If you study in the same room your test will be in, you’ll do better too than you would studying in your dorm o Your brain associated the material that you learned with the context you were in (context > physical environment) o Next best thing: state-independent learning (learning material free of contextual cues) DRUG DEPENDENCE - Various factors influence dependence o Comorbidity with personality characteristics or psychiatric disorders Antisocial personality disorder, conduct disorder, sensation-seeking. Mood and anxiety related disorders. Schizophrenia o Sociological influence Exhibiting early deviance, susceptible to peer influence, exhibiting poor school performance Not on list: race, sex, socioeconomic status White upper middle class make up bulk of users BEHAVIORAL PHARMACOLOGY: reinforcement and punishment [SEE IMAGE] - Long term drug users slowly shift from positive reinforcement to negative reinforcement. It starts off positive because they initially take the drug to feel good where adding the drug to their system results in happy feelings which reinforces behavior and increases likelihood to take drug again. However, over time tolerance develops and positive reinforcement withers away and drug dependence takes over along with withdrawal symptoms. The desire to make the symptoms go away will increase, so you get into a cycle where you constantly negatively reinforce your drug taking to avoid withdrawal. SELF-ADMINISTRATION STUDIES - These studies are where we allow subjects to administer drugs themselves voluntarily - The rate of self-administration and switching to what would be classified as a use disorder, are incredibly similar between humans and animals (can use in both animals and humans) - By presenting a cue that was previously paired with a drug, we can cause the animal to display drug seeking behavior even if it hasn’t had access to the drug for a long time - 15-17% of drug users switch to abusing the drug o We can study: escalation, maintenance, extinction, reinstatement Gives insight into underlying machination Reinstatement/relapse is a particularly important area to study
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Figure out what triggers drug cravings and what can reduce them (prevent relapse) DRUG DISCRIMINATION STUDIES - Self-administration studies won’t work for everything o Example: LSD (not a drug people experience a craving for) - Drug discrimination studies can give us insight into how a drug will make someone feel without having to give it to anyone (just using animal models) o How it works: take a drug that we already know how it makes people feel, compare a new drug to it. Then we compare that old behavioral response to the new one o
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