dopamine

noun
do·​pa·​mine | \ ˈdō-pə-ˌmēn How to pronounce dopamine (audio) \

Definition of dopamine

: a monoamine C8H11NO2 that is a decarboxylated form of dopa and that occurs especially as a neurotransmitter in the brain

Examples of dopamine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Vivitrol blocks opioid molecules from attaching to opioid receptors and take away the stimulation of dopamine, which cause a person to get high. Tomás Mier, PEOPLE.com, "Demi Lovato Reveals She Smokes Weed and Drinks 'in Moderation,' But Says 'It Isn’t for Everyone'," 17 Mar. 2021 The medication blocks the dopamine reward system that gets stimulated when alcohol enters the bloodstream and reaches the brain. Paula Dobbyn, Anchorage Daily News, "Injectable medication shows promise for Anchorage’s homeless alcoholics," 4 Mar. 2021 For example, Wolfram Schultz of the University of Cambridge and others have shown that when animals perform an action that yields better results than expected, the brain’s dopamine system is activated. Quanta Magazine, "Artificial Neural Nets Finally Yield Clues to How Brains Learn," 18 Feb. 2021 With many out of work or isolated at home and working remotely, digital day-trading has provided distraction and a dopamine hit. Chase Difeliciantonio, San Francisco Chronicle, "Addictive technology, pandemic isolation helped drive GameStop stock surge," 28 Jan. 2021 Trivedi and his colleagues speculated that bupropion, which acts on the neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine, may have cushioned the emotional and neurological blow of meth withdrawal. Benjamin Ryan, NBC News, "Meth has devastated the gay community for decades. A new treatment offers hope.," 23 Feb. 2021 The dopamine levels act like a global reinforcement signal. Quanta Magazine, "Artificial Neural Nets Finally Yield Clues to How Brains Learn," 18 Feb. 2021 In response, our reward centers release a surge of dopamine—a chemical that regulates pleasure. Anna Brooks, Popular Science, "Fireworks scare us—that’s why we love them," 30 Dec. 2020 The release of the neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin in our brains increases feelings of elation and joy. Harvey Mackay, Star Tribune, "Juice up your joy levels when you can," 27 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dopamine.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of dopamine

1959, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dopamine

dopa + amine

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about dopamine

Time Traveler for dopamine

Time Traveler

The first known use of dopamine was in 1959

See more words from the same year

Statistics for dopamine

Last Updated

3 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Dopamine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dopamine. Accessed 14 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for dopamine

dopamine

noun
do·​pa·​mine | \ ˈdō-pə-ˌmēn How to pronounce dopamine (audio) \

Medical Definition of dopamine

: a monoamine C8H11NO2 that is a decarboxylated form of dopa and occurs especially as a neurotransmitter in the brain and as an intermediate in the biosynthesis of epinephrine — see intropin

More from Merriam-Webster on dopamine

Nglish: Translation of dopamine for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dopamine

Comments on dopamine

What made you want to look up dopamine? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!