Vagus nerve stimulation may help treat drug addiction

Illustration of neurons in the brain


Stimulating the vagus nerve of rats deters them from seeking cocaine, suggesting that this therapy could help treat drug addiction and prevent relapse in substance use disorders.

The vagus nerve is a bundle of nerve fibres connecting the brain to most internal organs. Previous research has shown that stimulating it with electrical devices called vagus nerve stimulators can treat various conditions, including depression and opioid withdrawal. Christopher Driskill at the University of Texas at Dallas and his colleagues investigated whether vagus nerve stimulation affects…


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