COLUMBIA, Mo. – Studies have shown that resveratrol, a natural compound found in colored vegetables, fruits and especially grapes, may minimize the impact of Parkinson’s disease, stroke and Alzheimer’s disease in those who maintain healthy diets or who regularly take resveratrol supplements. Now, researchers at the University of Missouri have found that resveratrol may also block the effects of the highly addictive drug, methamphetamine.
Dennis Miller, associate professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences in the College of Arts & Science and an investigator with the Bond Life Sciences Center, and researchers in the Center for Translational Neuroscience at MU, study therapies for drug addiction and neurodegenerative disorders. Their research targets treatments for methamphetamine abuse and has focused on the role of the neurotransmitter dopamine in drug addiction. Dopamine levels in the brain surge after methamphetamine use; this increase is associated with the motivation to continue using the drug, despite its adverse consequences. However, with repeated methamphetamine use, dopamine neurons may degenerate causing neurological and behavioral impairments, similar to those observed in people with Parkinson’s disease. (more…)