George F. Koob, Ph.D., Senior Investigator - Principal Investigators - The Intramural Research Program of the National Institute on Drug Abuse

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George F. Koob, Ph.D., Senior Investigator


Neurobiology of Addiction Section

BG 5635FL RM 2001
5635 Fishers Ln.
Rockville, MD 20852

: 301-443-3885

George F. Koob, Ph.D., Senior Investigator

Chief, Neurobiology of Addiction Section

Post-doctoral Training - University of Cambridge, Department of Experimental Psychology, Medical Research Council, Neurochemical Pharmacology Unit

Department of Neurophysiology, Walter Reed Army Institute of Research.

Ph.D. - Behavioral Physiology, Johns Hopkins University

B.S. - Zoology, Pennsylvania State University


The Neurobiology of Addiction Section conducts research towards understanding the neurobiological bases for altered motivational states associated with drug addiction at the neurocircuitry, cellular and molecular level and using these studies as a heuristic approach to the study of emotions. In addition, the section conducts research on the relationship between pain and emotional systems in the context of the same neurocircuitry. The neurocircuitry under study involves specific elements of the basal forebrain involving the elements of the extended amygdala: central nucleus of the amygdala, bed nucleus of the stria terminalis and elements of the ventral striatum including the shell and core of the nucleus accumbens. The sections also conducts research on the identification of molecular factors that load such circuits and neurotransmitter system function, on identification of cellular interactions between such brain stress systems, and on identification of the role of outputs such as the hypothalamus in expressing such negative emotional states. Such research will provide key information not only about the neurobiology of addiction, pain and stress but also key information about the neurobiology of motivational systems in general. The ultimate goal of the section is to understand how cellular and molecular changes produce changes in particular neurocircuits to convey negative emotional states that contribute to the motivation to seek drugs.

Selected Publications:

View more publications at PubMed.

More about Dr. Koob

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The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the principal biomedical and behavioral research agency of the United States Government. NIH is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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