Binge Drinking in Adolescence Linked With Structural Changes in Brain

by Kathy Jones on  October 30, 2014 at 10:56 PM Alcohol & Drug Abuse News
RSS Email Print This Page Comment bookmark
Font : A-A+

Heavy drinking during teenage years can lead to structural changes in the brain that can cause memory deficits which persist into adulthood, a new study reveals.
 Binge Drinking in Adolescence Linked With Structural Changes in Brain
Binge Drinking in Adolescence Linked With Structural Changes in Brain

The study found that, even as adults, rats given daily access to alcohol during adolescence had reduced levels of myelin - the fatty coating on nerve fibers that accelerates the transmission of electrical signals between neurons.

These changes were observed in a brain region important in reasoning and decision-making. Animals that were the heaviest drinkers also performed worse on a memory test later in adulthood. The findings suggest that high doses of alcohol during adolescence may continue to affect the brain even after drinking stops. Further research is required to determine the applicability of these findings to humans.

In this study, Heather Richardson, PhD, her graduate student Wanette Vargas, BA, and colleagues at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, compared myelin in the prefrontal cortex - an area of the brain that is vital to reasoning and decision-making - in young male rats given daily access to either sweetened alcohol or sweetened water for two weeks. Animals that drank alcohol as adolescents had reduced myelin levels in the prefrontal cortex compared with those that drank a similar amount of sweetened water.

When the researchers examined the alcohol-exposed animals several months later, they found that the animals continued to display reduced myelin levels as adults.

The study was published in The Journal of Neuroscience.

Source: ANI

Post a Comment

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
Notify me when reply is posted
I agree to the terms and conditions

More News on:

Alcoholic Liver Disease Parkinsons Disease Parkinsons Disease Surgical Treatment Diet Lifestyle and Heart Disease Brain Brain Facts Teenage Ataxia Alcohol Addiction and Women Language Areas in The Brain 

News A - Z

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

News Search

Medindia Newsletters

Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Find a Doctor
Advertisement

Stay Connected

  • Available on the Android Market
  • Available on the App Store

Facebook

News Category

News Archive