Sunday, July 5, 2020
Home Life Style Health & Fitness A Brain Circuit Can Help Reverse Craving for Liquor, Says Study

A Brain Circuit Can Help Reverse Craving for Liquor, Says Study

Rats were surgically implanted with optic fibres aimed to shine light on the CRF neurons -- to make them inactive at the flip of a switch

Scientists have found that they can reverse the urge to drink alcohol, finds a study, which may open the door to developing drug or gene therapies to control alcohol addiction.

The team at US-based Scripps Research used a laser treatment to temporarily inactivate a specific neuron, which not only reversed alcohol-seeking behaviour but also reduced the physical symptoms of withdrawal.

“This discovery is exciting. It means we have another piece of the puzzle to explain the neural mechanism driving alcohol consumption,” said Olivier George, Associate Professor at Scripps.

Although the treatment is far from ready for human use, George believes identifying these neurons opens the door to developing drug therapies or even gene therapies to control alcohol addiction.

For the study, reported in Nature Communications journal, the team tested the role of a subset of neurons in the ensemble, called corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) neurons. They found these CRF neurons make up 80 per cent of the ensemble.

Liquor (Representational image).

Rats were surgically implanted with optic fibres aimed to shine light on the CRF neurons — to make them inactive at the flip of a switch.

Once rats were alcohol dependent, the researchers withdrew alcohol, prompting withdrawal symptoms in rats. When they were offered alcohol again, rats drank more than ever. The CeA neuronal ensemble was active, telling rats to drink more.

Also Read- Instagram Launches Beta Version if its in-app Shopping Feature in US

When the CRF neurons were inactivated, rats immediately returned to their pre-dependent drinking levels. The intense motivation to drink had gone. Inactivating these neurons also reduced the physical symptoms of withdrawal, such as abnormal gait and shaking.

“We were able to characterise, target and manipulate a critical subset of neurons responsible for excessive drinking,” said Giordano de Guglielmo, staff scientist at Scripps. (IANS)

STAY CONNECTED

18,999FansLike
362FollowersFollow
1,779FollowersFollow

Most Popular

Country of Origin of Products: A Concern For Indians

As the government orders e-commerce players to display the "Country of Origin" of products sold on their platforms, a survey reveals three in ten...

JioMeet, A Make in India App to Compete with Zoom

With Reliance Jio launching a Make in India free video-conferencing application JioMeet that directly takes on Zoom, the US-based company said on Saturday they...

Instagram to Redesign it’s Story Feature

Facebook-owned Instagram is preparing to launch a huge redesign that would make it easier to watch favorite Stories in one place. Follow us on our...

In Conversation with Annu Rizvi

Annu Rizvi is a lyricist and a writer who has worked in several big projects including 'transparency', 'meri saheli’ and many others. He worked...

WhatsApp Launches First Brand Campaign in India

WhatsApp on Saturday launched its first brand campaign in India that narrates real stories about how Indians communicate daily on WhatsApp with their closest...

Government to Propose Triple Solar Manufacturing Capacity

The central government has proposed a major push to domestic manufacturing of renewable energy equipment in the country that would completely eliminate the need...

Here’s Why some Covid-19 Patients can Breathe Well with Low Oxygen Level

Researchers have found possible explanations for Covid-19 patients who present with extremely low, otherwise life-threatening levels of oxygen, but no signs of difficulty in...

Morning Walk can Help Heart Bypass Surgery Patients Get Sound Sleep

Just half an hour of morning walk can help heart bypass surgery patients get a sound sleep at night, says a study. "Many patients have...

Recent Comments