Published online Jun 28, 2018. doi: 10.5498/wjp.v8.i2.64
Peer-review started: April 3, 2018
First decision: May 2, 2018
Revised: May 6, 2018
Accepted: May 9, 2018
Article in press: May 10, 2018
Published online: June 28, 2018
Core tip: Melatonin is a pleiotropic signalling molecule that regulates several physiological functions, and synchronises biological rhythms. Recent evidences are beginning to reveal that a dysregulation of endogenous melatonin rhythm or action may play a larger role in the aetiology and behavioural expression of drug addiction, than was previously considered. This review, using information garnered from extant literature, examines the roles played by melatonin and its receptors in addictive behaviours, addiction related changes in brain chemistry and brain plasticity; and its possible benefits in the management of drug associated withdrawal syndrome, relapse and behavioural sensitisation.