Sleep-deprived mice find cocaine more rewarding

November 02, 2020

Sleep deprivation may pave the way to cocaine addiction. Too-little sleep can increase the rewarding properties of cocaine, according to new research in mice published in eNeuro.

Poor sleep and cocaine use go hand-in-hand. Both acute and chronic cocaine use disrupts sleep, and sleep disturbances can increase the likelihood of relapse. But it's unclear how sleep deprivation contributes to cocaine addiction. The orexin system, which influences motivated and addictive behaviors through the peptide orexin, may underly the relationship: orexin activity increases during sleep deprivation, and blocking orexin receptors reduces reward-seeking.

Bjorness and Greene conditioned mice to associate a room with cocaine and examined how sleep deprivation affected their ability to develop a preference for the cocaine room. Sleep-deprived mice formed a preference for a lower dose of cocaine, one that did not affect rested mice. They also formed a stronger preference for a standard cocaine dose, indicating an increase in the amount of reward cocaine provided. Blocking the orexin system reduced the increased cocaine preference driven by sleep deprivation.
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Manuscript title: Sleep Deprivation Enhances Conditioned Place Preference in an Orexin Receptor Modulated Manner

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About eNeuro

eNeuro is an online, open-access journal published by the Society for Neuroscience. Established in 2014, eNeuro publishes a wide variety of content, including research articles, short reports, reviews, commentaries and opinions.

About The Society for Neuroscience

The Society for Neuroscience is the world's largest organization of scientists and physicians devoted to understanding the brain and nervous system. The nonprofit organization, founded in 1969, now has nearly 37,000 members in more than 90 countries and over 130 chapters worldwide.

Society for Neuroscience

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