Academy of Finland
Funding decision
Name Veijola, Juha
Organisation OY
Project title
Programming the Brain across Generations: How early environment and genes shape vulnerability to addiction
Decision No. 141042
Decision date 21.10.2010
Funding period 01.01.2011 - 31.12.2014
Funding 500 001
WebFOCUS Report
Project description
The early origins of addiction are poorly understood; we lack clear models that predicting the developmental pathways leading to addictive behaviour. The probability of drug experimentation during childhood and adolescence, and the development of addiction later in life depend on genetic and environmental risk factors that program the brain from conception onwards. Recent studies in humans and experimental animals suggest, for example, that prenatal exposure to maternal smoking may lead to the modulation of reward systems and, in turn, drug-seeking behaviour later in life. In the proposed research, we will test the hypothesis that early environmental insults, such as prenatal exposure to maternal cigarette smoking, interact with individuals’ genetic background to influence developmental trajectories and promote addiction later in life. We investigated this in 471 members of the The Northern Finland Birth Cohort 1986 (NFBC1986). Halfof their mothers had smoked during pregnancy.