Genetically Predisposed to Addiction

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November 28, 2011

Genetically Predisposed to Addiction


A new study is showing that there is a genetic link in men that plays a role in addiction. Research done by Scott Stoltenberg, a psychologist at the University of Nebraska, is showing that the gene NRXN3 is linked to the dependency of nicotine, alcohol and opiate addiction. The research is specifically studying the premise behind an individual’s impulse control. Stoltenbert says, “Genes directly make people more susceptible to addiction to a certain substance. In some cases, genes play on maladaptive behaviors, such as impulsivity, that makes addiction more likely.”

Addiction to alcohol and drugs is a disease that a person can be genetically predisposed to. If a person comes from a family that addiction runs in then they are more susceptible to have to deal with addiction. The likelihood that an individual will suffer from addiction varies from person to person. How vulnerable someone is to suffering from addiction has a lot to do with their genetic makeup. Not everyone who has access to drugs abuses them and not everyone who has to take a prescription medication for medical purposes becomes addicted. However, some do.

Many factors including environment can play a role in the likelihood that an individual will suffer with the potentially fatal disease of addiction. When considering the factors that caused a person to become addicted to drugs or alcohol, their genetic makeup needs to be taken into consideration.

The realization that the gene NRXN3 plays a role in impulse control and addiction will help give insight into different treatment methodologies that can ultimately help individuals recover from alcohol and drug addiction.

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