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Impact of the alcoholic intoxication in adolescence on ethanol consumption and inhibitory control in adult life: participation of the arkypallidal pathway

Grant number: 20/06214-6
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2020
Effective date (End): May 31, 2022
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Pharmacology - Neuropsychopharmacology
Principal researcher:Karina Possa Abrahão
Grantee:Leticia Pichinin de Souza
Home Institution: Escola Paulista de Medicina (EPM). Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP). Campus São Paulo. São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:19/01686-0 - I cannot stop after the first ‘drink’! Alcohol effects on the inhibitory control brain systems, AP.JP


The harmful use of alcohol is not restricted to the development of dependence. When intoxicated, decision-making is impaired, which facilitates choices that may lead to risky and/or regret. Intoxication is a consequence of elevated alcohol consumption observed, for example, in "binge drinking", which is defined as the ingestion of many doses of the drug in a couple of hours. The consumption can intensify to heavier patterns and may lead to blackouts (heavily impaired cognition and motor function). Heavy consume patterns are common among adolescents. Adolescence is a critical period for drug abuse as it interferes with neurodevelopment and produces cognitive alterations, as decision-making impairments. Individuals who consume alcohol present difficulties in deciding about drug use. Decision-making is a process that involves cortical structures, e.g. prefrontal cortex, and subcortical structures, e.g. basal ganglia. The basal ganglia operate in action selection, and among its nuclei, the globus pallidus has unique importance for inhibitory control. Recently, scientists have revealed the diversity of neuronal subtypes and pathways in the external globus pallidus. Markedly, the arkypallidal pathway is formed by a unique neuron subtype with the function of providing a stop-signal to the striatum and cancelling imminent actions. Previous data have showed that ethanol decreases the firing activity of arkypallidal neurons. Thus, we propose to study the impact of ethanol intoxication during adolescence on the function of arkypallidal synapses on to striatal neurons and on risky behaviour of adult individuals. (AU)

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