Brain Health,
Know Your Neurotransmitters,

#074: Know Your Neurotransmitters: Dopamine

May 01, 2015

Get ready for round two of the “Know Your Neurotransmitters” series. This week Jesse taps into Prof. John Salamone’s vast pool of knowledge on the highly popular, and often misunderstood neurotransmitter, Dopamine. We learn about RDoC (Research Domain Criteria) and smarter ways of categorizing, diagnosing and treating mental disorders in the near future.

Speaking of things to come, in the Ruthless Listener Retention Gimmick, Jesse reports on some salacious statistics about whether robots are the fetish of the near-future…

Here’s wishing you all the very best in balancing the amount of Dopamine in your brain. In the case of Smart Drug Smarts, the path of excess DOES lead to the tower of wisdom. So don’t forget to subscribe to our mailing list.

Read Full Transcript
Show Notes
  • 00:00:32

    Know Your Neurotransmitters: Welcome to the world of Dopamine.

  • 00:01:30

    This Week in Neuroscience: How children learn to read and structural changes in their brain.

  • 00:04:43

    Reaching 100 five-star reviews on iTunes and a massive thank you to all.

  • 00:06:27

    Congratulations to SDS alumnus Dr. David Nutt on successfully crowd-funding his research on the effect of LSD on brains.

  • 00:07:04

    An introduction to Prof. John Salamone.

  • 00:08:19

    Misconceptions about Dopamine.

  • 00:09:03

    Distinction between liking and wanting.

  • 00:09:52

    Smoking cigarettes and Dopamine manipulation.

  • 00:11:00

    Effort related choice behavior.

  • 00:12:19

    Human studies on effort related choice behavior.

  • 00:13:36

    A lowdown on proinflammatory cytokines and motivational stimulation.

  • 00:14:57

    Tetrabenazine and its role in blocking the storage space in nerve cells.

  • 00:16:27

    Increasing transmission of Dopamine with the anti-depressant Bupropion.

  • 00:17:55

    How effective are SSRIs in treating motivational performance?

  • 00:18:46

    A different approach to tackle depression and RDoC.

  • 00:21:16

    The opposite end of the spectrum from depression.

  • 00:22:31

    Dopamine interference with avoidance and escape patterns and choice behavior.

  • 00:24:46

    Prof. Salamone's advice on maintaining optimum Dopamine levels.

  • 00:29:09

    Ruthless Listener Retention Gimmick: Sex with robots. #robofetish


  1. Nootropos says:

    Hi. This is a great episode. I already listened twice and would need a transcript.
    Why the choice of bupropion and the older and more easily available deprenyl (selegiline), a MAOB inhibitor?

    1. Jesse Lawler says:

      Glad you enjoyed — and actually, YES, we’re working on getting a transcript made — of this and other episodes.

      I’m not quite clear on your question, but if you can re-state it (maybe reference the piece of the interview you’re referring to?), I could ping Professor Salamone and maybe get some clarification.

      1. Nootropos says:

        Thanks Jesse. Great to hear about transcripts!
        Regarding my question, at min 13 approx. Dr speaks about bupropion to increase dopamine and thus motivation. He also comments about SSRIs decreasing motivation. I know that bupropion increases dopamine by blocking a transporter but there are other drugs like the well known selegiline (a.k.a. deprenyl) in alife extension and smart drugs communities that are also supposed to increase dopamine, in this case by inhibiting MAOB. My question is what is the difference between the effects of bupropion and selegiline in terms of effects in motivation. If they are both effective, selegiline is easier to obtain and also has less side effects. Or is it thet bupropion has a more norepinephrine increasing effect? I hope I made my point clearer.

  2. ben says:

    There’s a great book called Compass of Pleasure by David Linden. In it, he talks a lot about dopamine, as well as the research done on mice where they’ve chemically and electrically stimulated the brain to produce a pleasure response. It would be great if you did another ‘Know Your Neurotransmitter’ episode with serotonin, maybe with David as the guest!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top