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PSYC 471 (5)
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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYC 471
Professor
Linda Booij
Semester
Winter

Description
PSYC 471 • NMDAand alcohol on cognitive functioning, motor functioning, and driving • Sample came from recreational users (addiction was an exclusion) • Worried about behavioural outcomes (such as driving accidents), as most research has focused on the brain • Placebo- and alcohol-controlled test • Wanted to compare NMDAeffects with alcohol’s effects, as research on the effects of alcohol on driving are widespread PCE: prenatal cocaine exposure. PTE: prenatal tobacco exposure. • Longitudinal • Imaging • 13 – 15 years • Matched pairs 9 : 1 PSYC 471 • Thinner PFC in adolescents with PCE • Smaller pallidum with alcohol exposure Cocaine’s mechanism of action: blocks monoamine reuptake transporters. PCE associated with errors in neural migration, differentiation, proliferation, and maturation; also with errors in synaptogenesis. PCE is usually confounded with PTE. PCE and PTE associated with enlarged thalamus. • Behavioural correlate: impulsivity MDMA Empathogenic drugs: create social symptoms, such as affiliation and empathy. • Amphetamine • Hallucinogenic o Perceptual disturbances o Altered perception of colour • CNS and PNS active • 5-HT, DA, NE • Increases net release of each NT • Huge increase in presynaptic intracellular 5-HT, which is released into the synapse • Physiological changes: high BP and heart rate • Pre-psychotic episodes, delirium – fades after drug leaves body • Symptoms from acute use can last up to a week Serotonin syndrome: manifestation of acute toxicity. Occurs in the context of excessive serotonin to in the presynaptic cell and synapse. • Hyperthermia • Hyperreflexia • Muscle rigidity 9 : 2 PSYC 471 Mid- to chronic use associated with neurotoxicity, especially in areas/structures associated with serotonin. • Still not completely known Trouble with research is that MDMAis almost always concomitant with use of other drugs (cannabis and alcohol are the most common). • Hard to parse what is occurring due to MDMAalone • Rave environment has its own implications – such as fast music (heart rate), crowds (high body temperature), and dehydration • Decreased grey matter concentration (cerebellum), brainstem, part of Broca’s area, part of the visual association area in long-term polydrug (including MDMA) users • Memory deficits • Hippocampal atrophy Future research: piloting use of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy on PTSD. • SR improvement, but no clinician-tested improvements • This was in treatment-resistant cases; allows individuals to feel better about attending CBT Need to consider quality of the drug – drugs used in laboratory setting are not the same as those purchased illicitly. • Mood disturbances and rebound
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