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The Cocaine Gene: Identified

Thursday, November 13th, 2008 The Cocaine Gene: Identified

Nick Allen from the Telegraph (11 11 08) has written a valuable article in relation to the fact that scientists have been able to identify a “cocaine gene” which makes people more likely to become a cocaine addict.

In view of this information the suggestion of screening is now a possibility and may assist in the prevention of addiction.

The study observed 670 cocaine addicts, 25% of that group were more likely to carry the gene variant than people who did not use the drug.

Rainer Spanagel, professor of psychopharmacology at the Central Institute of Mental Health in Mannheim, Germany, who led the study, said: “If you are a carrier of this gene variant the likelihood of getting addicted to cocaine is higher. You can certainly use this as a vulnerability marker for cocaine addiction.”

moreover, existing research suggests genetic factors account for about 50 per cent of alcoholism while cocaine addiction is about 70 per cent genetic.

On a positive note it could be argued that counselling could prevent addiction in terms of cocaine misuse. Britain has the highest cocaine rate in Europe.

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