INS Graduate Student Dylan Kirsch published an article in Behavioural Brain Research entitled "Neural underpinnings of expecting alcohol: Placebo alcohol administration alters nucleus accumbens resting state functional connectivity".
This research probed the neural basis of the "placebo response phenomemon" whereby an individuals’ beliefs about whether they have consumed alcohol, irrespective of the actual presence of alcohol, can determine level of alcohol consumption and impact social behavior. Results suggest the placebo response to alcohol is associated with increased functional connectivity between a key reward network in the brain, NAcc – vmPFC and SCC, and that these brain changes relate to perceived subjective feelings of intoxication
Kirsch DE, Le V, Kosted R, Fromme K, Lippard ETC. Neural underpinnings of expecting alcohol: Placebo alcohol administration alters nucleus accumbens resting state functional connectivity.Behav Brain Res. 2023 Feb 2;437:114148. doi:10.1016/j.bbr.2022.114148