Professor, Department of Psychiatry
University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL
Department of Psychiatry
University of Florida College of Medicine
McKnight Brain Institute
PO Box 100256
Gainesville, FL 32610-0256
MSc, Animal Science, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands
PhD Neuropharmacology, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands
Postdoctoral Fellowship: Neuropharmacology, The Scripps Research Institute, San Diego, California
Development of novel treatments for drug addiction.
Current Research Focus
Drug addiction is a chronic disorder that is characterized by compulsive drug taking and relapse after periods of abstinence. The research in our laboratory focuses on the development of non-addictive treatments for nicotine, alcohol, and opioid addiction. We use animal models to study the neuronal substrates that mediate the negative mood state and anxiety-like behavior associated with drug withdrawal. The negative mood state associated with drug withdrawal is investigated with the intracranial self-stimulation procedure and anxiety-like behavior is investigated with the elevated plus maze test and other anxiety tests. In addition, we study drug self-administration and stress, drug, and cue-induced reinstatement of extinguished drug seeking behavior. Our research group has shown that corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) mediates the negative mood state associated with nicotine and alcohol withdrawal and plays a critical role in stress-induced relapse of extinguished nicotine-seeking behavior. These studies may lead to the development of treatments that decrease drug abuse in humans and prevent relapse after a period of abstinence.
Bruijnzeel A.W., Gold M.S. (2005) The role of corticotropin-releasing factor in cannabis, nicotine and alcohol dependence. Brain Research Reviews, 49, 505-528.
Bruijnzeel A.W., Prado M., Isaac S., (2009) Blockade of CRF1 receptors prevents nicotine withdrawal-induced anhedonia and stress-induced relapse. Biological Psychiatry, 66, 110-117.
Gold MS, Kobeissy FH, Wang KK, Merlo LJ, Bruijnzeel A.W., Krasnova IN, Cadet JL. (2009). Methamphetamine- and trauma-induced brain injuries: comparative cellular and molecular neurobiological substrates. Biol Psychiatry. 66:118-27.
Rylkova D., Shah H.P., Small E., Bruijnzeel A.W. (2009) Deficit in brain reward function and acute and protracted anxiety-like behavior after discontinuation of a chronic alcohol liquid diet in rats. Psychopharmacology, 203, 629-640.
Bruijnzeel A.W., Small E, Pasek T.M., Yamada H. (2010) Corticotropin-releasing factor mediates the dysphoria-like state associated with alcohol withdrawal in rats. Behavioural Brain Research, 210:288-291.