Alcoholism is a psychiatric disorder that composes one of the principal causes of health disabilities in the world population. Furthermore, the available pharmacotherapy is limited. Therefore, this research was carried out to better understand the basis of the underlying neurobiological processes of this disorder and to discover potential therapeutic targets. Real-time PCR analysis was performed in the amygdala nuclei region of the brain of mice exposed to a chronic three-bottle free-choice model (water, 5 and 10% v/v ethanol). Based on individual ethanol intake, the mice were classified into three groups: “compulsive-like” (i.e., ethanol intake not affected by quinine adulteration), “ethanol-preferring” and “ethanol non-preferring”. A fourth group had access only to tap water (control group). The candidate gene ACSS2 was genotyped in human alcoholics by real-time polymerase chain reaction using the markers rs6088638 and rs7266550. Seven genes were picked out (Acss2, Acss3, Acat1, Acsl1, Acaa2, Hadh, and Hadhb) and the mRNA level of the Acss2 gene was increased only in the “compulsive-like” group (p = 0.004). The allele frequency of rs6088638 for the gene ACSS2 was higher in the Alcoholic human group (p = 0.03), although sample size was very small. The gene ACSS2 is associated with alcoholism, suggesting that biochemical pathways where it participates may have a role in the biological mechanisms susceptible to the ethanol effects.
Journal of Neural Transmission – Springer Journals
Published: May 26, 2017
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