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Neuropeptide Y: Role in Emotion and Alcohol Dependence

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Neuropeptide Y (NPY) is considered to be an important neuromodulator in the regulation of emotional behavior. For example, NPY is consistently involved in anxiety-related behaviors and there is increasing support for a role of this peptide in mood disorders such as depression. Furthermore, recent evidence suggests that NPY has a significant role in the neurobiological response to alcohol, including alcohol consumption, dependence, and withdrawal. In addition, NPY is beginning to emerge as an important modulator in the etiology of alcoholism that is independent from the addictive and reinforcing properties of the traditional system commonly associated with dopamine and instead, is strongly associated with innate emotionality. The recent developments elucidating the role of NPY in emotion and alcohol dependence are reviewed and the potential of the NPY system as a novel therapeutic strategy in the treatment of anxiety, depression and alcohol-related disorders is examined.





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Keywords: Neuropeptide Y; alcohol; anxiety; dependence; depression; emotion; sedation; stress

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Scientific Director, Douglas Hospital Research Centre, Institute of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), 6875 LaSalle Blvd., Montreal, QC, Canada, H4H 1R3.

Publication date: April 1, 2006

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  • CNS & Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments on the medicinal chemistry, pharmacology, molecular biology, genomics and biochemistry of contemporary molecular targets involved in neurological and central nervous system (CNS) disorders e.g. disease specific proteins, receptors, enzymes, genes. Each issue of the journal will contain a series of timely in-depth reviews written by leaders in the field covering a range of current topics on drug targets involved in neurological and CNS disorders. As the discovery, identification, characterization and validation of novel human drug targets for neurological and CNS drug discovery continues to grow; this journal will be essential reading for all pharmaceutical scientists involved in drug discovery and development.
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