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Genetic signs of alcoholism in women studied for the first time
Date:2/19/2013

This press release is available in Spanish.

Research done at the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country has determined the frequency of genetic variants linked to alcoholism for the Spanish population, and its incidence not only in individuals with a high level of alcohol intake, but also in individuals with alcohol dependence. Furthermore, the broad presence of women in the sample has made it possible, for the first time, to associate some of these genetic variants with a high level of alcohol intake in women. The results have been published in various top, international journals worldwide, like the journal Addiction, a leader in the field of misused substances.

Alcohol intake is a significant health and economic problem in Spain. Between 2% and 20% of the Spanish population are reckoned to be individuals who abuse alcohol intake, and even though it is not a unique problem since the aetiology of this imbalance has been established in genetics and in environmental variables, many studies have shown that there are genetic endowments that can confer greater susceptibility to alcoholism. For example, some variations in enzyme-encoding genes that break down the alcohol molecule are known to be closely associated with a higher intake, since they cause a variation in its metabolization rate which can be up to 30 times higher.

The pieces of research conducted by David Celorrio-Herrera of the BIOMICS research group at the UPV/EHU has focused on the study of different genetic variants in samples of the Spanish population for whom it has been possible to determine a statistically significant incidence in alcohol abuse. Specifically, the enzyme-encoding genes involved in the alcohol metabolization process and genes that encode receptors and enzymes linked to the dopaminergic system have been analysed. "The aetiology of addiction is due to a disorder in
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Contact: Aitziber Lasa
a.lasa@elhuyar.com
34-943-363-040
Elhuyar Fundazioa
Source:Eurekalert  

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