Neural responses to acute cocaine administration in the human brain detected by fMRI

Neuroimage. 2005 Dec;28(4):904-14. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2005.06.039. Epub 2005 Aug 2.


An improved functional MRI (fMRI) method for the reduction of susceptibility artifacts has been utilized to measure blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) responses to acute cocaine administration in the human brain of cocaine users. Intravenous administration of cocaine (20 mg/70 kg) activated mesolimbic and mesocortical dopaminergic projection regions and showed temporal positive or negative BOLD responses. These results obtained from human cocaine users supported the involvement of the dopaminergic pathway in cocaine addiction from animal models. In addition, the cocaine administration also induced activations in the hierarchical brain networks in the anterior prefrontal cortex (aPFC) of the Brodmann area 10 (BA10) and orbitofrontal cortex (OFC). It is suggested that the dopaminergic pathways and the hierarchical brain networks may participate in mediating cocaine reward processes, associative learning, motivation, and memory in cocaine addiction in the human brain.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Algorithms
  • Behavior / drug effects
  • Blood Pressure / drug effects
  • Brain / drug effects*
  • Brain Mapping
  • Cerebral Cortex / physiology
  • Cocaine / administration & dosage
  • Cocaine / pharmacology*
  • Cocaine-Related Disorders / physiopathology
  • Dopamine / physiology
  • Echo-Planar Imaging
  • Female
  • Heart Rate / drug effects
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Limbic System / physiology
  • Male
  • Oxygen / blood


  • Cocaine
  • Oxygen
  • Dopamine