Skip to Content

I Can Quit Anytime I Want

The Biological Basis of Euphoria and Addiction


Author(s)

William D. Rogers
Department of Biology
Ball State University
wrogers@bsu.edu

Abstract

This “clicker case” explores the biological basis for the temporary euphoria that accompanies drug use as well as certain aspects of the biological basis of drug dependency. The case is called a clicker case because it is designed for use with personal response systems (aka clickers). The case itself is a PowerPoint presentation (~2.7 MB) punctuated by multiple-choice questions that students answer in class using clickers. It could be adapted for use without these technologies. The case was developed for use in a large introductory biology course for both majors and non-majors.


Objectives

  • Describe how neurotransmitters are removed from a synapse.
  • Explain the sequence of events involved in communication at the synapse.
  • Recognize that there is a biological basis for dependency to certain drugs.
  • Understand that certain drugs interfere selectively with neurotransmission.
  • Describe two ways that drugs can increase dopamine levels in a synapse.
  • Recognize that normal behaviors can activate the reward system in the brain and that drugs of abuse affect those same reward circuits.

Keywords

Addiction; substance use; neurotransmitter; synapse; neuron; dopamine; cocaine; drug dependency; chemical dependency; opiates

Topical Areas

Social issues

Educational Level

Undergraduate lower division

Format

PDF, PPT

Type / Methods

Clicker, Interrupted

Language

English

Subject Headings

Biology (General)  |   Neuroscience  |   Physiology  |   Public Health  |  


Date Posted

11/16/09

Teaching Notes

Case teaching notes are password-protected and access to them is limited to paid subscribed instructors. To become a paid subscriber, begin the process by registering.

Teaching notes are intended to help teachers select and adopt a case. They typically include a summary of the case, teaching objectives, information about the intended audience, details about how the case may be taught, and a list of references and resources.

Answer Key

Answer keys for the cases in our collection are password-protected and access to them is limited to paid subscribed instructors. To become a paid subscriber, begin the process by registering.

Comments