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The Craving Brain: What The Mind Hungers For

When we try to get rid of a bad habit, whether it involves food or drugs or gambling, it often seems like we’re fighting ourselves inside. The reality’s not far off: Addiction twists the reward pathways of the brain to keep addicts tied to whatever gets them high. But can we use our knowledge of the brain to undo these neurological knots? Watch psychiatrist Nora Volkow, chemist Kim Janda, and neuroscientists Eric Nestler and Amir Levine explain the latest thinking in the science of addiction in the mind in “The Craving Brain.”

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Moderator

Elizabeth VargasABC News Anchor

Award-winning anchor and correspondent Elizabeth Vargas has covered breaking news stories, reported in-depth investigations and conducted newsmaker interviews around the world since joining ABC News. During the historic Iraqi elections in 2005, she anchored the network’s “World News” from Baghdad.

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Participants

Kim D. JandaChemist

Kim Janda is a professor of chemistry at The Scripps Research Institute whose research efforts merge biology and chemistry. He has investigated using the immune system to target drug addiction, catalytic antibodies, and creating molecules to treat cancer.

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Eric NestlerNeuroscientist, Professor of Psychiatry

Eric Nestler is a neuroscientist, professor of psychiatry, and chair of the neuroscience department at Mount Sinai, and the director of the Friedman Brain Institute.

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Amir LevinePsychiatrist, Neuroscientist

Amir Levine is an adult, adolescent, and child psychiatrist and neuroscientist at Columbia University in New York and The Center of Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto.

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Nora D. VolkowPsychiatrist

Nora D. Volkow is the director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse at NIH. She pioneered the use of brain imaging to investigate the effects of drugs in the human brain and has demonstrated that drug addiction is a brain disease.

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