Psychology & Psychiatry

Cannabis: Pill better than smoking for pain relief

Marijuana provides greater pain relief when taken in pill form than when it is smoked, according to a study published on Monday that touches on a controversial medical issue.

Psychology & Psychiatry

Preventing suicide: A critical next step

Doctors may in the future be able to take a blood test to determine if a patient is suicidal, hopefully decreasing the number of people taking their own lives.

Psychology & Psychiatry

Countering brain chemical could prevent suicides

(Medical Xpress)—Researchers have found the first proof that a chemical in the brain called glutamate is linked to suicidal behavior, offering new hope for efforts to prevent people from taking their own lives.


Experimental drug found to reduce nicotine craving

(Medical Xpress)—Researchers at the Aptuit Centre for Drug Discovery and Development in Italy, have found that a drug called GSK598809 is able to block a type of dopamine receptor in the brain that has been linked to nicotine ...


Therapeutic approach for patients with severe depression

Brain pacemakers have a long-term effect in patients with the most severe depression. This has now been proven by scientists from the Bonn University Medical Center. Eleven patients took part in the study over a period of ...

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Neuropsychopharmacology (from Greek νεῦρον, neuron, "nerve"; ψυχή, psyche, "mind", "soul"; φάρμακον, pharmakon, "poison in classic Greek; drug in modern Greek" and the suffix -λογία, -logia, "study of") is an interdisciplinary science related to psychopharmacology (how drugs affect the mind) and fundamental neuroscience. It entails research of mechanisms of neuropathology, pharmacodynamics (drug action), psychiatric illness, and states of consciousness. These studies are instigated at the detailed level involving neurotransmission/receptor activity, bio-chemical processes, and neural circuitry. Neuropsychopharmacology supersedes psychopharmacology in the areas of "how" and "why", and additionally addresses other issues of brain function. Accordingly, the clinical aspect of the field includes psychiatric (psychoactive) as well as neurologic (non-psychoactive) pharmacology-based treatments.

Developments in neuropsychopharmacology may directly impact the studies of anxiety disorders, affective disorders, psychotic disorders, degenerative disorders, eating behavior, and sleep behavior.

The rigorous way fundamental processes of the brain are being discovered is creating a field on par with other “hard sciences” such as chemistry, biology, and physics, so that eventually it may be possible to repair mental illness with ultimate precision. An analogy can be drawn between the brain and an electronic device: neuropsychopharmacology is tantamount to revealing not only the schematic diagram, but the individual components, and every principle of their operation. The bank of amassed detail and complexity involved is huge; mere samples of some of the details are given in this article.

This account hangs on the assumption that materialism, the view that all mental states are reducible to brain states, is true.

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