I’ve seen several MRI studies of cocaine cravings, but I don’t remember seeing the same for alcohol:
Aims: This study’s purpose was to identify the neural substrates and mechanisms responsible for craving among subjects with alcohol use disorders (AUDs) using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Methods: Alcohol abusers with AUD (n = 9) and demographically similar non-abusers (n = 9) participated in this study. After given 5 cc of alcohol, subjects were exposed to different types of stimuli [i.e. alcohol, non-alcoholic beverage, and visual control pictures and one rest (cross-hair)]. Craving levels were rated through self-report on a Likert scale immediately after the presentation of visual cues. Results: Brain activations in the fusiform gyri, temporal gyri, parahipocampal gyrus, uncus, frontal gyri, and precuneus were correlated with the level of craving among subjects with AUD in response to alcohol cues. Conclusions: In conclusion, specific brain regions were identified that are associated with craving among subjects with AUD.