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Chronic intermittent ethanol exposure produces persistent anxiety in adolescent and adult rats.

Alcoholism, clinical and experimental research (2015-02-17)
Candice E Van Skike, Jaime L Diaz-Granados, Douglas B Matthews
ABSTRACT

Ethanol (EtOH) dependence and tolerance in the adult are marked by increased function of NMDA receptors and decreased function of GABAA receptors, which coincide with altered receptor subunit expression in specific brain regions. Adolescents often use EtOH at levels greater than adults, yet the receptor subunit expression profiles following chronic intermittent EtOH (CIE) exposure in adolescents are not known. Persistent age-dependent changes in receptor subunit alterations coupled with withdrawal-related anxiety may help explain the increase in alcohol abuse following adolescent experimentation with the drug. Adolescent and adult rats received 10 intraperitoneal administrations of 4.0 g/kg EtOH or saline every 48 hours. At either 24 hours or 12 days after the final exposure, anxiety-like behavior was assessed on the elevated plus maze and tissue was collected. Western blotting was used to assess changes in selected NMDA and GABAA receptor subunits in whole cortex and bilateral hippocampus. CIE exposure yields a persistent increase in anxiety-like behavior in both age groups. However, selected NMDA and GABAA receptor subunits were not differentially altered by this CIE exposure paradigm in adolescents or adults. CIE exposure produced persistent anxiety-like behavior, which has important implications for alcohol cessation. Given the reported behavioral and neuropeptide expression changes in response to this dose of EtOH, it is important for future work to consider the circumstances under which these measures are altered by EtOH exposure.

MATERIALS
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Product Description

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