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Brain Sci. 2013, 3(2), 790-799;

Effects of Lifelong Ethanol Consumption on Brain Monoamine Transmitters in Alcohol-Preferring Alko Alcohol (AA) Rats

School of Medicine, University of Tampere, Tampere 33014, Finland
Department of Internal Medicine, Tampere University Hospital, Tampere 33521, Finland
Department of Alcohol, Drugs and Addiction, National Institute for Health and Welfare, Helsinki 00271, Finland
Department of Public Health, University of Helsinki, Helsinki 00100, Finland
School of Health Sciences, University of Tampere, Tampere 33014, Finland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 1 March 2013 / Revised: 2 May 2013 / Accepted: 7 May 2013 / Published: 15 May 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ethanol Neurotoxicity)
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The purpose of the present study was to examine the combined effects of aging and lifelong ethanol exposure on the levels of monoamine neurotransmitters in different regions of the brain. This work is part of a project addressing interactions of aging and lifelong ethanol consumption in alcohol-preferring AA (Alko Alcohol) line of rats, selected for high voluntary consumption of ethanol. Intake of ethanol on the level of 4.5–5 g/kg/day for about 20 months induced only limited changes in the neurotransmitter levels; the concentration of noradrenaline was significantly reduced in the frontal cortex. There was also a trend towards lower levels of dopamine and 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) in the frontal cortex, and towards a lower noradrenaline level in the dorsal cortex. Aging was associated with a decreased concentration of dopamine in the dorsal cortex and with a declining trend in the striatum. The levels of 5-HT in the limbic forebrain were higher in the aged than in the young animals, and in the striatum, there was a trend towards higher levels in older animals. The data suggest that a continuous intake of moderate amounts of ethanol does not enhance the age-related alterations in brain monoamine neurotransmission, while the decline in the brain level of dopamine associated with aging may be a factor contributing to age-related neurological disorders. View Full-Text
Keywords: aging; ethanol; dopamine, noradrenaline; 5-hydroxytryptamine; animal model aging; ethanol; dopamine, noradrenaline; 5-hydroxytryptamine; animal model
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Jaatinen, P.; Sarviharju, M.; Raivio, N.; Eriksson, C.J.P.; Hervonen, A.; Kiianmaa, K. Effects of Lifelong Ethanol Consumption on Brain Monoamine Transmitters in Alcohol-Preferring Alko Alcohol (AA) Rats. Brain Sci. 2013, 3, 790-799.

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