Brainstorms: Neurotransmission of Cognition, Part 2 Selective NRIs Are Smart Drugs: Exploiting Regionally Selective Actions on Both Dopamine and Norepinephrine to Enhance Cognition

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Recent scientific advances are beginning to clarify both the anatomical substrates and pharmacologic basis of cognition. Executive functions such as problem solving activate neurons in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (PFC) and utilize numerous “smart” neurotransmitters, including dopamine, norepinephrine, histamine, acetylcholine, and perhaps others. Malfunction of the circuits that release these neurotransmitters can hypothetically lead to problems with executive functioning in numerous disorders, including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as well as schizophrenia, major depressive disorder, and various dementias.

J Clin Psychiatry 2003;64(2):110-111