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The Use of Neuromodulation in the Treatment of Cocaine Dependence

Alba-Ferrara, Lucia M. PhD; Fernandez, Francisco MD; de Erausquin, Gabriel A. MD, PhD, MSc

Addictive Disorders & Their Treatment: March 2014 - Volume 13 - Issue 1 - p 1–7
doi: 10.1097/ADT.0b013e31827b5a2c
Original Articles

Cocaine-related disorders are currently among the most devastating mental diseases, as they impoverish all spheres of life resulting in tremendous economic, social, and moral costs. Despite multiple efforts to tackle cocaine dependence, pharmacological as well as cognitive therapies have had limited success. In this review, we discuss the use of recent neuromodulation techniques, such as conventional repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), deep brain stimulation, and the use of H coils for deep rTMS for the treatment of cocaine dependence. Moreover, we discuss attempts to identify optimal brain targets underpinning cocaine craving and withdrawal for neurodisruption treatment, as well as some weaknesses in the literature, such as the absence of biomarkers for individual risk classification and the inadequacy of treatment outcome measures, which may delay progress in the field. Finally, we present some genetic markers candidates and objective outcome measures, which could be applied in combination with transcranial magnetic stimulation treatment of cocaine dependence. We anticipate future research in this area combining genetic and physiological markers, neurodisruption, and clinical behavioral measures.

Department of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Roskamp Laboratory of Brain Development, Modulation and Repair, Morsani College of Medicine, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL

Supported in part by NIMH 7K08MH077220 to G.A.d.E.

G.A.d.E. is Steven and Constance Lieber investigator and Sydney R. Baer Jr investigator. He is also the Roskamp Chair in Biological Psychiatry at University of South Florida.

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Reprints: Gabriel A. de Erausquin, MD, PhD, MSc, Department of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, Roskamp Laboratory of Brain Development, Modulation and Repair, Morsani College of Medicine, University of South Florida, 3515 E. Fletcher Avenue, Tampa, FL. 33613 (e-mail: gdeeraus@health.usf.edu).

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