Date of Award
Master of Science
Factors relating to social interaction have been shown to alter patterns of psychostimulant use in preclinical and clinical models. The present study aimed to determine the effects of social isolation on nicotine preference using conditioned place preference (CPP) and the effects social isolation and nicotine exposure on reward-related dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens (NAc). Regarding CPP results, there was a significant housing (group or isolated) x drug (nicotine or saline) x trial interaction on time spent in the drug-paired chamber. Regarding dopamine recordings, there was a significant housing x drug exposure (nicotine or saline) x time (60 min recording period) interaction on percent change in dopamine half-life following cocaine. At cocaine's peak effect, isolation and nicotine exposure both independently increased this dopaminergic response, but an interactive effect between these variables was not significant. Identifying risk factors for drug abuse is critical for prevention and treatment programs.
dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.
Paige, Nicholas Bross, "Examining the Effects of Social Isolation on Nicotine Preference and Mesolimbic Dopamine" (2020). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2139.