Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS) Surprisingly Is Evolutionary and Found Everywhere: Is It “Blowin’ in the Wind”?

Kenneth Blum, Thomas McLaughlin, Abdalla Bowirrat, Edward J. Modestino, David Baron, Luis Llanos Gomez, Mauro Ceccanti, Eric R. Braverman, Panayotis K. Thanos, Jean Lud Cadet, Igor Elman, Rajendra D. Badgaiyan, Rehan Jalali, Richard Green, Thomas A. Simpatico, Ashim Gupta, Mark S. Gold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS) encompasses many mental health disorders, including a wide range of addictions and compulsive and impulsive behaviors. Described as an octopus of behavioral dysfunction, RDS refers to abnormal behavior caused by a breakdown of the cascade of reward in neurotransmission due to genetic and epigenetic influences. The resultant reward neurotransmission deficiencies interfere with the pleasure derived from satisfying powerful human physiological drives. Epigenetic repair may be possible with precision gene-guided therapy using formulations of KB220, a nutraceutical that has demonstrated pro-dopamine regulatory function in animal and human neuroimaging and clinical trials. Recently, large GWAS studies have revealed a significant dopaminergic gene risk polymorphic allele overlap between depressed and schizophrenic cohorts. A large volume of literature has also identified ADHD, PTSD, and spectrum disorders as having the known neurogenetic and psychological underpinnings of RDS. The hypothesis is that the true phenotype is RDS, and behavioral disorders are endophenotypes. Is it logical to wonder if RDS exists everywhere? Although complex, “the answer is blowin’ in the wind,” and rather than intangible, RDS may be foundational in species evolution and survival, with an array of many neurotransmitters and polymorphic loci influencing behavioral functionality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number321
JournalJournal of Personalized Medicine
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • Dopamine
  • Genetic addiction risk severity (GARS) test
  • Hypodopaminergia
  • Pro-dopamine regulation (KB220)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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