Navigation Links
A research of the UGR shows the genetic predisposition to develop alcohol abuse
Date:12/18/2007

This release is also available in Spanish.

The research reveals that a subject's brain with low beta-endorphin levels becomes accustomed to the presence of an exogenous surplus, diminishing its own supply and triggering dependence on an external source--in this case, alcohol.

According to a study by the research group "Alcoholism and drug addiction", of the University of Granada, although there are no specific reasons to become alcoholic, many social, family, environmental, and genetic factors may contribute to its development. Thanks to this study, researchers have shown that the lack of endorphin is hereditary, and thus that there is a genetic predisposition to become addicted to alcohol.

Beta-endorphin is a kind of morphine released by the brain in response to several situations, such as pain. In this way, beta-endorphins can be considered endogenous analgesics to numb or dull pains.

Researchers have focused on the low beta-endorphin levels in chronic alcohol abusers. According to Jos Rico Irles, professor of Medicine of the UGR, and head of the research group, this low beta-endorphin level determines whether someone may become an alcoholic. When a subjects brain with low beta-endorphin levels gets used to the presence of an exogenous surplus, then, when its own production stops, a dependence starts on the external source: alcohol.

Who may become and alcohol abuser?

A total of 200 families of the province of Granada participated in the research. There was at least one chronic alcoholic parent in each family. From birth, each subject presented predetermined beta-endorphin levels. However, children of this population group aged between 6 months and 10 years old, registered lower beta-endorphin levels than other children of the same age. These levels were even lower in children whose both parents were alcohol abusers, the researcher states.

According to researcher, although alcohol consumption does not affect all people in the same way, differences in endorphin levels make some subjects more vulnerable to alcohol. Therefore, they are more likely to become alcohol dependent.

Beta-endorphins constitute a useful biological marker to identify specifically those subjects who have a higher risk of developing alcohol abuse, the research claims.

Regarding the results of this study, professor Rico states the following: alcohol-abuse prevention must consist of locating and identifying genetically predisposed subjects. More campaigns for children and teenagers should be launched before these young people make contact with alcohol. Alcohol awareness is fundamental to prevent addiction, the researcher affirms, because alcohol is a drug with reversible effects up to a point.

In relation to the botelln culture (Botelln is a Spanish custom in which young people congregate in a park, street or any open public place to share alcoholic drinks and converse before entering bars, nightclubs, discos, etc.), Jos Rico states that some of these social drinkers could have low beta-endorphin levels and, therefore, a higher predisposition to become solitary drinkers and to develop alcohol abuse.


'/>"/>

Contact: Php. Jos Rico Irles
jrico@ugr.es
34-958-244-054
Universidad de Granada
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Research shows skeleton to be endocrine organ
2. Newly created cancer stem cells could aid breast cancer research
3. Dominant cholesterol-metabolism ideas challenged by new research
4. Researchers identify proteins involved in new neurodegenerative syndrome
5. Texas researchers and educators head for Antarctica
6. MGH researchers describe new way to identify, evolve novel enzymes
7. University of Pennsylvania researchers develop formula to gauge risk of disease clusters
8. University of Oregon researcher finds that on waters surface, nitric acid is not so tough
9. U of MN researchers discover noninvasive diagnostic tool for brain diseases
10. U of Minnesota researchers discover noninvasive diagnostic tool for brain diseases
11. Story ideas from the Journal of Lipid Research
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/2/2016)... -- Perimeter Surveillance & Detection Systems, Biometrics ... Support & Other Service  The latest report ... analysis of the global Border Security market . ... $17.98 billion in 2016. Now: In November ... software and hardware technologies for advanced video surveillance. ...
(Date:5/16/2016)...   EyeLock LLC , a market leader of ... an IoT Center of Excellence in Austin, ... of embedded iris biometric applications. EyeLock,s iris ... security with unmatched biometric accuracy, making it the most ... EyeLock,s platform uses video technology to deliver a fast ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... FRANCISCO and BANGALORE, India , ... of EdgeVerve Systems, a product subsidiary of Infosys (NYSE: ... provider, today announced a global partnership that will ... way to use mobile banking and payment services. ... is a key innovation area for financial services, but it ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... Supplyframe, the ... the Supplyframe Design Lab . Located in Pasadena, Calif., the Design Lab’s ... how hardware projects are designed, built and brought to market. , The Design ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...  Blueprint Bio, a company dedicated to identifying, protecting ... has closed its Series A funding round, according to ... "We have received a commitment from Forentis Fund that ... meet our current goals," stated Matthew Nunez . ... complete validation on the current projects in our pipeline, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... WI (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... focused on quality, regulatory and technical consulting, provides a free webinar ... presented on July 13, 2016 at 12pm CT at no charge. , Incomplete ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... 22, 2016 Cell Applications, Inc. and ... to produce up to one billion human induced ... one week. These high-quality, consistent stem cells enable ... and spend more time doing meaningful, relevant research. ... high-volume manufacturing process that produces affordable, reliable HiPSC ...
Breaking Biology Technology: