Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Insulin's Brain Impact Links Drugs And Diabetes

Insulin's Brain Impact Links Drugs And Diabetes

Insulin, long known as an important regulator of blood glucose levels, now has a newly appreciated role in the brain.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center researchers, working with colleagues in Texas, have found that insulin levels affect the brain's dopamine systems, which are involved in drug addiction and many neuropsychiatric conditions.

In addition to suggesting potential new targets for treating drug abuse, the findings raise questions as to whether improper control of insulin levels -- as in diabetes -- may impact risk for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or influence the effectiveness of current ADHD medications.

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