Neuropharmacology of New Psychoactive Substances (NPS)

Volume 32 of the series Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences pp 165-181


The Affective Properties of Synthetic Cathinones: Role of Reward and Aversion in Their Abuse

  • Heather E. KingAffiliated withPsychopharmacology Laboratory, Department of Psychology, American University Email author 
  • , Anthony L. RileyAffiliated withPsychopharmacology Laboratory, Department of Psychology, American University

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The drug class known as synthetic cathinones has gained significant attention in the last few years as a result of increased use and abuse. These compounds have been shown to possess reinforcing efficacy in that they are abused in human populations and are self-administered in animal models. The present chapter outlines the affective properties of synthetic cathinones that are thought to impact drug self-administration in general and presents research confirming that these drugs have both rewarding and aversive effects in standalone and concurrent assessments. The implications of these affective properties for the overall abuse potential of these compounds are discussed along with directions for future research.


Affective properties Avoidance Cathinones Reward