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Lecture 7

PSYB65H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 7: Medial Forebrain Bundle, Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor, Chemical Synapse

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Ted Petit

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PSYB65 Human Brain and Behaviour: Lectures 7 and 8
4 Classifications of drugs
- Prescription drugs
- Over-the-counter drugs
- Social drugs
- Non-commercial drugs (or available commercially but not for psychoactive effects)
Tolerance: drug taken repeatedly reduced behavioural effect
- Brain responds to compensate for repeated action of drug by changing sensitivity or number
of receptors for drug
Withdrawal: someone who stops taking a drug after having been on it long enough to build
tolerance to it and have had physiology/psychological changes the behavioural effects of
withdrawal are exactly the opposite of the behavioural effects of the drug itself
- At normal level of activation, stimulant becomes less activated
- At normal level of activating, depressant becomes hyperactivated
- Coming off of a stimulant is not fatal, but off a depressant may cause seizures and may be
- There is also the psychological effect of “craving” with withdrawal
1. Psychological addiction: behavioural dependence on drug difficult to define/measure
- Doesn’t have to be a drug
2. Physical addiction: physiologically measurable symptoms
- Addictive qualities of the drug depend more on the form of the drug + mechanism of
administration than on the drug itself: typically has to do with speed + dosage (eg. Cocaine
leaves in tea not very addictive vs. powder more addictive vs. injecting it extremely
Stimulants: cause the EEG to move into a more activated state
- Caffeine
o Inhibits sleep
o Some tolerance develops
o Stops headaches
o Stimulates digestive system
o Withdrawal symptoms: (opposite of drug’s symptoms) headaches, constipation
o Not very toxic; estimated overdose = 70-100 cups of coffee needed to kill you
o Inhibits breakdown of cAMP increased amounts of cAMP increased glucose
production and heightened cellular activity
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