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Reproductive Neuroendocrinology

Treatment-Seeking Inpatient Cocaine Abusers Show Hypothalamic Dysregulation of Both Basal Prolactin and Cortisol Secretion

Contoreggi C.a · Herning R.I.a · Koeppl B.a · Simpson P.M.b · Negro Jr. P.J.c · Fortner-Burton C.d · Hess J.a

Author affiliations

aIntramural Research Program, National Institute on Drug Abuse, Baltimore, Md., bBiostatistics, Department of Pediatrics, University of Arkansas Medical Center/Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Little Rock, Ark., cDepartment of Psychiatry, University of Maryland at Baltimore, School of Medicine, Baltimore, Md., and dUnited Network of Organ Sharing, Richmond, Va., USA

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Neuroendocrinology 2003;78:154–162

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Reproductive Neuroendocrinology

Received: July 03, 1993
Accepted: March 27, 2003
Published online: October 02, 2003
Issue release date: September 2003

Number of Print Pages: 9
Number of Figures: 6
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 0028-3835 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0194 (Online)

For additional information: https://www.karger.com/NEN

Abstract

Cocaine causes neuroendocrine aberrations in cocaine abusers with pituitary stress hormone secretion providing a window to the stress system in the brain. Substance abusers and control participants were hormonally profiled for 3 weeks. Abusers showed significant basal elevations in prolactin in week 1 with normalization over the 3 weeks. No differences in prolactin secretion were seen with either thyrotropin-releasing hormone stimulation or L-dopa suppression testing. Basal afternoon cortisol secretion was significantly elevated during weeks 1 and 2 comparing abusers to controls. Elevated afternoon cortisol secretion is a sensitive indicator of central stress activation. These results point to the hypothalamus, not the pituitary gland, as being primarily altered in cocaine withdrawal. The data demonstrate that both the dopamine-prolactin and hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axes are affected during cocaine cessation. As medications are developed to modulate activation of a dysfunctional stress system, future therapeutic studies of substance abuse, withdrawal, craving and relapse should employ more sophisticated tests of hypothalamic pituitary function, especially the HPA axis, as this information may be a guide in the diagnosis and predict clinical responses.

© 2003 S. Karger AG, Basel


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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Reproductive Neuroendocrinology

Received: July 03, 1993
Accepted: March 27, 2003
Published online: October 02, 2003
Issue release date: September 2003

Number of Print Pages: 9
Number of Figures: 6
Number of Tables: 2

ISSN: 0028-3835 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0194 (Online)

For additional information: https://www.karger.com/NEN


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