Substance abuse refers to the harmful or hazardous use of substances that affect brain function and results in altered perception, mood, consciousness and behavior. These substances include alcohol and illicit drugs. Addiction may develop following sustained use of some substances, making the cycle of abuse even more difficult to interrupt.
Feinstein Institute researchers are studying how substance abuse permanently changes brain structure and function. They are also focusing on the development of novel treatments for drug abuse and are conducting clinical trials that test the efficacy of some treatments on lowering the motivation to seek out these drugs.
Feinstein Institute investigators who study substance abuse include Stephen L. Dewey.