Navigation Links
Alcohol helps the brain remember, says new study
Date:4/12/2011

AUSTIN, Texas-Drinking alcohol primes certain areas of our brain to learn and remember better, says a new study from the Waggoner Center for Alcohol and Addiction Research at The University of Texas at Austin.

The common view that drinking is bad for learning and memory isn't wrong, says neurobiologist Hitoshi Morikawa, but it highlights only one side of what ethanol consumption does to the brain.

"Usually, when we talk about learning and memory, we're talking about conscious memory," says Morikawa, whose results were published last month in The Journal of Neuroscience. "Alcohol diminishes our ability to hold on to pieces of information like your colleague's name, or the definition of a word, or where you parked your car this morning. But our subconscious is learning and remembering too, and alcohol may actually increase our capacity to learn, or 'conditionability,' at that level."

Morikawa's study, which found that repeated ethanol exposure enhances synaptic plasticity in a key area in the brain, is further evidence toward an emerging consensus in the neuroscience community that drug and alcohol addiction is fundamentally a learning and memory disorder.

When we drink alcohol (or shoot up heroin, or snort cocaine, or take methamphetamines), our subconscious is learning to consume more. But it doesn't stop there. We become more receptive to forming subsconscious memories and habits with respect to food, music, even people and social situations.

In an important sense, says Morikawa, alcoholics aren't addicted to the experience of pleasure or relief they get from drinking alcohol. They're addicted to the constellation of environmental, behavioral and physiological cues that are reinforced when alcohol triggers the release of dopamine in the brain.

"People commonly think of dopamine as a happy transmitter, or a pleasure transmitter, but more accurately it's a learning transmitter," says Morikawa. "It stre
'/>"/>

Contact: Daniel Oppenheimer
oppenheimer@mail.utexas.edu
512-232-0682
University of Texas at Austin
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. New leads on the causes of alcoholism
2. Gene involved in predisposition to alcohol consumption identified
3. New data show non-alcoholic fatty liver disease will reach epidemic status in the US
4. Why some children are harmed by mothers alcohol, but others arent
5. Moderate-to-heavy alcohol intake may increase risk of atrial fibrillation
6. Women involved in leisure activities drink less alcohol
7. Pattern of drinking affects the relation of alcohol intake to coronary heart disease
8. Why are men more susceptible to alcoholism?
9. Alcohol consumers are becoming the norm, UT Southwestern analysis finds
10. International scientific forum on alcohol research
11. Alcohol consumption after breast cancer diagnosis may increase recurrence risk
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:7/11/2014)... the Wildlife Conservation Society shows that no-take zones ... species such as lobster, conch, and fish recover ... reef areas. , The reporttitled "Review of the ... research literature from no-take areas around the world. ... a recognized expert in marine protected areas and ...
(Date:7/11/2014)... 11, 2014--Researchers at the Department of Energy,s Oak ... awards, presented by R&D Magazine in recognition of ... awards recognize the tremendous value of our National ... and development at the National Labs continues to ... pursue the scientific and technological innovations necessary to ...
(Date:7/11/2014)... South Wales, Australia when NASA,s Aqua satellite passed overhead ... 11 (12:35 p.m. local time/11:35 p.m. EDT on July ... (NSW), the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard captured ... smoke (light brown) from various fires. Actively burning areas, ... , The New South Wales, Australia Government website "NSW ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Belize's lobster, conch, and fish populations rebuild in no-take zones 2ORNL wins eight R&D 100s 2ORNL wins eight R&D 100s 3ORNL wins eight R&D 100s 4
... leading provider of,embedded speech solutions today announced the ... AG, according to SVOX CEO Volker Jantzen.,SVOX has ... developed,over 25 years, including the SpeechAdvance(TM) speech recognition ... majority of the Professional,Speech Processing Group,s employees will ...
... MAYWOOD, Ill. -- Most people know that too much sodium ... suggests that people trying to lower their blood pressure should ... effect to sodium. Researchers found that the ratio of ... cardiovascular disease than sodium or potassium alone. "There ...
... officials from the U.S. National Science Foundation and the ... today marked the occasion of the research vessel JOIDES ... and transit to Honolulu, after a complete transformation to ... The JOIDES Resolution is the U.S. research ...
Cached Biology News:SVOX Acquires Speech Processing Unit of Siemens AG, Expands Into Speech Recognition and Speech Dialog 2Cutting salt isn't the only way to reduce blood pressure 2Ocean research officials hail completion of modernization for US scientific ocean drilling vessel 2
(Date:7/11/2014)... BCC Research ( http://www.bccresearch.com ) reveals ... REACTION (PCR) TECHNOLOGY: GLOBAL MARKETS , the global market ... $140 billion in 2013. This is estimated to grow ... annual growth rate (CAGR) of 28.6%. , New digital ... exciting possibilities within the broader PCR field. The opportunities ...
(Date:7/11/2014)... AZ (PRWEB) July 11, 2014 ... device company specializing in the soft tissue reconstruction ... All-Suture Anchor System for surgeries involving the shoulder ... fixation through a novel, inserter-controlled deployment method. The ... to partial deployment, anchor pull-out, or anchor displacement ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... Understanding the need for better quality and ... gap that currently exists in this area, ChanTest has ... of validated ion channel and GPCR cell lines. ... ion channels control many critical physiological functions throughout the ... potential to treat a variety of human diseases. ...
(Date:7/10/2014)... Los Angeles, CA (PRWEB) July 10, 2014 ... Analytical and Bioanalytical techniques during 18-20 August, 2014 at ... to critically review the recent developments in Analytical & ... across the globe. , Speaking on this occasion, Dr. ... that Analytica Acta conference is a remarkable one ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Global Market for Digital Polymerase Chain Reaction Technology to Reach $490 Billion by 2018; Equipment Sector Accounts for the Fastest Growing Segment With 33% CAGR 2Global Market for Digital Polymerase Chain Reaction Technology to Reach $490 Billion by 2018; Equipment Sector Accounts for the Fastest Growing Segment With 33% CAGR 3Cayenne Medical Launches SureLock™ All-Suture Anchor System for Shoulder and Extremity Surgery 2Cayenne Medical Launches SureLock™ All-Suture Anchor System for Shoulder and Extremity Surgery 3Leader in Ion Channel Research Announces Newly Validated and Re-Engineered Cells 2Leader in Ion Channel Research Announces Newly Validated and Re-Engineered Cells 3A Critical Review of Analytical Techniques for Improved Living Standards 2A Critical Review of Analytical Techniques for Improved Living Standards 3A Critical Review of Analytical Techniques for Improved Living Standards 4
... in the late 1970s with the first IPOs taking place in ... than 25 years old. , ,An interesting article in Genetic ... that most industry cycles run about 50 years until they mature. ... 50-year cycle. A new industry of significance usually produces an industrial ...
... In a long-planned departure from its traditional focus, high-end ... the U.S. Army for development of two different products. ... that it has secured $2.2 million in federal contracts ... with the Armys Research, Development and Engineering Command (CERDEC) ...
... Mike Strand has always kept his eye out ... Delta Technology and Cray Research, Strand took a stride forward ... company based out of his home dealing with barcode software. ... had expanded into a worldwide enterprise bringing in close to ...
Cached Biology Technology:Biotech industry reaches midpoint in 50-year maturation cycle 2Biotech industry reaches midpoint in 50-year maturation cycle 3Biotech industry reaches midpoint in 50-year maturation cycle 4Biotech industry reaches midpoint in 50-year maturation cycle 5SLE of Eau Claire lands $2.2 million in federal contracts 2SLE of Eau Claire lands $2.2 million in federal contracts 3Online Kiosks founder Mike Strand uses contest to screen new business plan 2Online Kiosks founder Mike Strand uses contest to screen new business plan 3
... Linkage: This CLS number ... created to easily match Cornings ... availability yet, please order under ... or contact customer service for ...
ID clarifier: With ethidium bromide (50 μg/ml)...
... cultured in DMEM and harvested at the log ... the antigens in their native forms, cells were ... on a 12-well (5 mm) adhesive coated slide, ... cellular attachment and to minimize background staining. ...
... Pre-tested for optimal ... support the growth of ... for methylcellulose colony-forming assays ... hematopoietic cells. Not suitable ...
Biology Products: