After reading the Nissen (2014) article, choose one of the …

After reading the Nissen (2014) article, choose one of the articles listed in the bibliography of the Nissen (2014). Go to the Library and find that article. Read, reflect and evaluate on the information shared in the article. Share your understanding of the approach discussed in the article. Discuss how you see the information in the article may apply with regard to intervention, prevention, and/or treatment to a specific addictive population.


The Nissen (2014) article provides a comprehensive review of the treatment approaches and interventions for individuals with addictive disorders, focusing on the integration of evidence-based practices. In this assignment, I have chosen to evaluate and discuss the article by Potenza et al. (2013) titled “Review: Neurobiology of Gambling Behaviors.”

Summary of Potenza et al. (2013)

Potenza et al. (2013) present an in-depth review of the neurobiological correlates underlying gambling behaviors. They discuss various aspects related to gambling disorders, including prevalence, diagnostic criteria, and clinical features. The article primarily focuses on the neurobiological aspects of gambling behaviors and highlights the role of genetics, brain imaging, and neurochemical systems in the development and maintenance of pathological gambling.

Understanding the Approach

Potenza et al. (2013) adopt a neurobiological perspective in examining gambling behaviors. They emphasize the significance of understanding the underlying neurobiological mechanisms when formulating effective interventions and treatments for individuals with pathological gambling. The article provides a comprehensive overview of the current research in this field, highlighting key findings related to genetic factors, neurochemical imbalances, and brain imaging studies.

Genetic Factors

The authors discuss the role of genetic factors in gambling disorders, citing evidence from twin and family studies. They explain that certain genes may increase an individual’s susceptibility to gambling disorders, and these genetic factors may interact with environmental influences to contribute to the development of pathological gambling. The article underscores the importance of further research to identify specific genes associated with gambling behaviors, as this knowledge could potentially inform targeted interventions and preventive strategies.

Neurochemical Imbalances

Potenza et al. (2013) also describe the involvement of various neurochemicals in gambling behaviors, including dopamine, serotonin, and noradrenaline. They discuss studies that have shown alterations in the functioning of these neurochemical systems in individuals with gambling disorders. The authors suggest that dysregulation of these neurochemicals may play a crucial role in the reinforcement and reward processes associated with gambling, contributing to its addictive nature. Understanding these neurochemical imbalances could guide the development of pharmacological interventions targeting specific neurotransmitter systems.

Brain Imaging Studies

The article highlights the advancements in neuroimaging techniques that have shed light on the neural correlates of gambling behaviors. Potenza et al. (2013) discuss studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and positron emission tomography (PET) that have identified brain regions and networks involved in decision-making, reward processing, and impulse control. These findings provide valuable insights into the neural mechanisms underlying gambling disorders and may have implications for the development of targeted interventions.

Application to Intervention, Prevention, and Treatment

The information presented in the article by Potenza et al. (2013) has several implications for intervention, prevention, and treatment approaches for individuals with gambling disorders.

Firstly, understanding the genetic factors associated with gambling disorders could inform the development of personalized interventions. By identifying individuals who may be genetically predisposed to developing pathological gambling, targeted prevention strategies could be implemented. Additionally, genetic markers could help in tailoring treatment approaches, potentially leading to more effective outcomes.

Secondly, the knowledge of neurochemical imbalances associated with gambling behaviors could provide insights into the development of pharmacological interventions. By targeting specific neurotransmitter systems implicated in the reinforcement and reward processes, medication-based treatments could be designed to regulate these imbalances. This could potentially alleviate the symptoms of pathological gambling and facilitate recovery.

Lastly, the findings from brain imaging studies offer promise for the development of non-pharmacological interventions. By identifying specific brain regions and networks involved in decision-making, impulse control, and reward processing, therapeutic techniques such as cognitive-behavioral therapies and neurofeedback may be tailored to target and modify these neural circuits, helping individuals regain control over their gambling behaviors.


In conclusion, the article by Potenza et al. (2013) provides a comprehensive overview of the neurobiological correlates underlying gambling behaviors. The adoption of a neurobiological perspective allows for a deeper understanding of the mechanisms involved in pathological gambling, with implications for intervention, prevention, and treatment approaches. The information presented in the article has the potential to aid in the development of personalized interventions, pharmacological treatments, and non-pharmacological therapies for individuals with gambling disorders. Further research in this field is warranted to enhance our understanding and effectively address this addictive population’s needs.