The phenomenon of drug craving

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Behavior, Addictive; Biological Markers; Dopamine; Humans; Neural Pathways; Risk Factors; Substance-Related Disorders




The phenomenology of drug craving has become the focus of much research within addictive disorders because of the belief that desire plays a role in maintaining the addiction. Many of the studies have focused on the activation of neural pathways, particularly within the dopamine system in response to specific events or stimuli. While many of these studies have focused on a particular drug of choice, little has been done across addictive disorders. This article will present and review phenomena that induce drug craving, as well as delineate precise neural pathways which are activated during craving and specific neurobiological markers which are associated with an increased risk for drug craving and other forms of addictive behavior.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: J Psychoactive Drugs. 2008 Sep;40(3):255-61. Link to article on publisher's website

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID