Natural Compound Works against Long-term Effects of Methamphetamine
Recent research by the University of Missouri (MU) has discovered that a natural compound found in colored vegetables and fruits, called resveratrol, may block the effects of methamphetamine. In addition, the same compound may diminish the impact of Parkinson’s disease, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease in healthy people.
Researchers at the Center for Translational Neuroscience at MU and Dennis Miller, associate professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences, study therapies for neurodegenerative disorders and drug addiction. Their current research targets treatments for methamphetamine abuse and the role of dopamine in drug addiction. Miller commented that “dopamine is critical to the development of methamphetamine addiction … and Parkinson’s disease, a disorder where dopamine neurons degenerate” (Sossamon, 2013).
The researchers at MU gave resveratrol to rats once a day for seven days in the same concentration that a human would receive from a healthy diet. After a week, researchers then measured how much dopamine was released by methamphetamine. The result of this study was that resveratrol significantly diminished methamphetamine’s ability to increase dopamine levels in the brain. “Our initial research suggests that resveratrol . . . has the potential to decrease the craving and desire for the drug,” Miller stated, adding that “our research suggests it may also prevent the changes in the brain that occur with the development of drug addiction” (Sossamon, 2013).
The MU study was published in Neuroscience Letters.
Sossamon, J. (2013). Natural compound mitigates effects of methamphetamine use, University of Missouri researchers find. Retrieved from http://munews.missouri.edu/news-releases/2013/1119-natural-compound-mitigates-effects-of-methamphetamine-abuse-university-of-missouri-researchers-find/