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Plasticity of reward neurocircuitry and the 'dark side' of drug addiction

Drug seeking is associated with activation of reward neural circuitry. Here we argue that drug addiction also involves a 'dark side'—a decrease in the function of normal reward-related neurocircuitry and persistent recruitment of anti-reward systems. Understanding the neuroplasticity of the dark side of this circuitry is the key to understanding vulnerability to addiction.

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We thank M. Arends for his assistance with the preparation of this manuscript.

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Koob, G., Le Moal, M. Plasticity of reward neurocircuitry and the 'dark side' of drug addiction. Nat Neurosci 8, 1442–1444 (2005).

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