THE BRAIN: Analyzing Neurobiology Through the Study of Addiction

Big Picture
Specific brain regions control specific brain functions
The nervous system communicates by conveying information using electrical and chemical signals across synaptic junctions
Drugs affect the biochemistry of the synaptic junctions in the reward system
The most effective treatment of drug addiction is a controversial issue between the ‘disease-based’ and ‘behavioral-based’ schools of thought.
Drug addiction can never be cured (or can it?)

Essential Questions
1. Should all drug addicts be treated as criminals?
2. Can drug addiction be cured or just treated?
3. What separates legal from illegal drugs?
4. Why do some consider dopamine the most influential chemical in the body?
5. Is animal research into the effects and possible treatments for drug abuse warranted?

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