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Saturday, June 27, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
Hippocampus Published Online: 24 Jun 2009
Adolescents diagnosed with an alcohol use disorder show neurodegeneration in the hippocampus, a region important for learning, memory, and mood regulation. This study examines a potential mechanism by which excessive alcohol intake, characteristic of an alcohol use disorder, produces neurodegeneration.
As hippocampal neural stem cells underlie ongoing neurogenesis, a phenomenon that contributes to hippocampal structure and function, we investigated aspects of cell death and cell birth in an adolescent rat model of an alcohol use disorder. Immunohistochemistry of various markers along with Bromo-deoxy-Uridine (BrdU) injections were used to examine different aspects of neurogenesis. After 4 days of binge alcohol exposure, neurogenesis was decreased by 33 and 28% at 0 and 2 days after the last dose according to doublecortin expression. To determine whether this decrease in neurogenesis was due to effects on neural stem cell proliferation, quantification of BrdU-labeled cells revealed a 21% decrease in the dentate gyrus of alcohol-exposed brains. Cell survival and phenotype of BrdU-labeled cells were assessed 28 days after alcohol exposure and revealed a significant, 50% decrease in the number of surviving cells in the alcohol-exposed group. Reduced survival was supported by significant increases in the number of pyknotic-, FluoroJade B positive-, and TUNEL-positive cells. However, so few cells were TUNEL-positive that cell death is likely necrotic in this model. Although alcohol decreased the number of newborn cells, it did not affect the percentage of cells that matured into neurons (differentiation).
Thus, our data support that in a model of an adolescent alcohol use disorder, neurogenesis is impaired by two mechanisms: alcohol-inhibition of neural stem cell proliferation and alcohol effects on new cell survival. Remarkably, alcohol inhibition of neurogenesis may outweigh the few dying cells per section, which implies that alcohol inhibition of neurogenesis contributes to hippocampal neurodegeneration in alcohol use disorders.
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Thursday, June 25, 2009
If you are a family or 'network' member (for example: a good friend, a house-sharer, maybe a concerned employer) of someone who is using alcohol or drugs problematically then this self-help programme may be of help to you.
It has been found effective in different formats; both in face-to-case delivery by General Practitioners, nurses, health educators and counsellors, as well as in a self-help manual. This support is now being made accessible on the web. . . . . .
Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research Published Online: 10 Jun 2009
Alcohol causes suppressed KiSS-1 gene expression in the reproductive hypothalamus; hence, contributing to this drug's ability to cause suppressed LHRH secretion and disruption of the pubertal process. We suggest that this action, at least in part, is through altered IGF-1 signaling.
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009
This report reviews developments in the neuroscience of addiction, explores how they might affect the way we view and treat drug problems, and considers the issues that they raise for drug policy in Europe. In language that is easily accessible, the report presents the complex brain processes involved in addition and the ethical implications inherent to current addiction research.
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Health Economics Early View 23 June 2009
Arq. Neuro-Psiquiatr. [online]. 2009, vol.67, n.2a, pp. 254-261
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Applications are invited for the 2009 ISAJE/ WHO Young Scholars Award. This award aims to provide recognition for the contributions to addiction science of young scholars from low and middle income countries and to promote their involvement in the field. The award is given for the best paper published by a young scholar from a low or middle income country on any topic related to addiction. The winner will receive a certificate and financial support to attend an international scientific or clinical meeting in the addiction or substance abuse field, to be chosen by the winner in consultation with the Award Committee.
Monday, June 22, 2009
This report presents summary results from the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS) for 2007. The report provides infor mation on the demographic and substance abuse characteristics of the 1.8 million annual admissions to treatment for abuse of alcohol and drugs in facilities that report to individual State administrative data systems
Notwithstanding the methodological problems which have probably arisen due to logistical constraints, this study raises some important issues. The first deals with the consequences of alcohol use and the second, the role that personality factors of alcohol abusers and the bearing these factors have on issues such as the antecedents of alcohol dependence and the determinants of the varying outcomes in patients with alcohol dependence.