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Addiction Treatment: Two Birds with One Stone

Addiction Treatment:  Two Birds with One Stone

Smoking, alcohol and drugs are members of a long chain of addictives. The story always starts with an adventure, and it seldom ends.

Unfortunately, having more than one addiction is considered fairly common, especially the combination of smoking and alcoholism, which is partially caused by the similar metabolic pathway in the human bodies, as already proven in previous studies, and the relative cheapness and availability of both.

A new study, which was published in Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, mentioned that one medication can treat both addictions at the same time.
Varenicline is a known stop-smoking medication that hinders the action of Dopamine; which is responsible for the rewarding effect of addiction, leaving only the negative side-effects of those addictives. A team of researchers from Chicago University has done a study to test the theory that Varenicline can help alcoholics as well. The study assessed 15 healthy participants; they were served a beverage containing different doses of alcohol three hours after Varenicline doses.

' We found that varenicline increased the unpleasant effects of alcohol and decreased drug liking," said the study' lead author, "thus we think that varenicline may reduce drinking by altering the effects of alcohol.'

Will this study be a primary step toward an anti-addiction medication? A question that need further studies to explore.

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Prepared by: Houssam Nahhas

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