Anne-Noël Samaha

Full Professor
Department of Pharmacology and Physiology
University of Montreal

Anne-Noël Samaha is an associate professor at the Department of Pharmacology and Physiology at the University of Montreal’s Faculty of Medicine.

She is interested in the neurobiology of rewards and motivation.

Her research work is based on neurobiological, psychological, and behavioural factors of drug addiction and the comorbidity between drug addiction and schizophrenia. Additionally, her scientific expertise is situated in the mesocorticolimbic pathway, reinforcement learning, motivation process with animal models with drug addiction.

The laboratory of behavioural neuropharmacology that she directs has as a main goal to characterise the neurobiological basis of learning, motivation and reward. In this context, the team of Professor Samaha wants to better understand drug addiction and its neurobiological mechanisms. The laboratory’s team wants to deepen the knowledge on what happens in our brain after receiving rewards such as water, food and obviously drugs. What are the neuron circuits activated? How can this activation push an individual to chase rewards? By what neurobiological mechanisms can this pursuit become pathological?

The research led allow to better understand the daily reactions towards reward but also the chaos that ensues when the reactions are not normal. We can observe that in drug addiction, compulsive disorders and schizophrenia.

The laboratory research combines animal models of auto administration of drugs with pharmacological techniques and techniques of molecular biology to answer such questions.

This content has been updated on 16 August 2023 at 21 h 12 min.