We investigated the possible relation between the endogenous opioid system and acute alcoholic intoxication in 21 subjects, of whom 13 were drinkers who came to the emergency service with evident symptoms of drunkenness, and 8 were nondrinkers who consumed 1 g alcohol per kg body weight over a short period. Different patterns of changes were found in the two groups for plasma concentrations of β-endorphin and adrenocorticotropic hormone. In drinkers, plasma levels of both substances increased, whereas in nondrinkers both concentrations decreased, the declines being especially notable 15, 30, and 45 min after ingestion. We found no differences between the two groups in plasma cortisol concentrations. The different levels of these substances may reflect differences in drinking behavior between the two groups.
Alcohol – Elsevier
Published: Nov 1, 1995
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