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The Genetics of Addiction Hereditary or Learned Behaviour

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Joshua Thorndyke                                                                                                     ADDICTION 1

Running Head: ADDICTION

The Genetics of Addiction Hereditary or Learned Behaviour

John J Thorndyke

Renfrew County District School Board

Joshua Thorndyke                                                                                                     ADDICTION 2

The Genetics of Addiction Hereditary or Learned Behaviour

The Genetics of Addiction published online for ADDICTIONS and discusses the very controversial topic of addiction. Is addiction a learned behavior or is it something we are predisposed to through inheritance? The controversy is that there is no concrete evidence to prove or disprove either of the too claims. The article does a great job of out lining how there are numerous factors that affect addiction and genetics is only part of them. I am in agreeance with the idea that though genetics play a role in addiction there is more to it then the idea that one is born an addict.

Debunking the myth that addicts create addicts has been a controversial topic for years and thought it is believed that genetics are to blame for addiction they only account for about 50 percent while the other 50 percent can be contributed to other factors such as Environmental factors and environment interactions. In fact, more than one–half of all children of alcoholics do not become alcoholic. As noted by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

We are not all born addicts! though children born to a parent or parents with an addiction problem are 4 times more likely to become an addict themselves, some people become addicts even if they come from homes without any known addict problem.

Joshua Thorndyke                                                                                                   ADDICTIONS 3

“Every time a person abuses alcohol or drugs, it strengthens the wiring associated with these substances, and the more one chases the effect of alcohol and drugs, the greater the chance of developing an addiction” National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. This is also known as epigenetic, it refers to external modifications to DNA that turn genes "on" or "off." These modifications do not change the DNA sequence, but instead, they affect how cells "read" genes. To put it simply even if addiction isn’t genetically predisposed by over indulging one can become an addict regardless of genetic inheritance.



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