Several lines of preclinical evidence indicate the ability of the prototypic cannabinoid CB 1 receptor antagonist, rimonabant, to suppress various alcohol-related behaviors, including alcohol drinking and seeking behavior and alcohol self-administration in rats and mice. Together, these data—synthetically reviewed in the present paper—suggest (a) the involvement of the cannabinoid CB 1 receptor in the neural substrate controlling alcohol intake, alcohol reinforcement, and the motivational properties of alcohol and (b) that rimonabant may constitute a new and potentially effective medication for the treatment of alcohol dependence.
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