Alcohol increases activity of the resting brain in social drinkers

Short-term alcohol intake can increase the activity of functional connections across the human brain when it is at rest, according to research published Oct 31 in the open access journal PLOS ONE by Panagiotis Bamidis and colleagues from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece.

Previous studies have shown that alcohol intake increases transmission of signals by the neurotransmitter GABA, present in 40% of the connections between in the brain.

Here, the researchers monitored resting brain activity in healthy social drinkers who had consumed one drink, and found a significant increase in the activity of these connections.

According to the authors, this increase in baseline brain activity is at least partially due to the alcohol-induced increase in GABA-mediated signal transmission.

More information: Lithari C, Klados MA, Pappas C, Albani M, Kapoukranidou D, et al. (2012) Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers. PLoS ONE 7(10): e48641. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0048641

Related Stories

New study reveals brain cell mechanism of alcohol dependence

date May 28, 2008

A study released today reveals a cellular mechanism involved in alcohol dependence. The study, in the May 28 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience, shows that gabapentin, a drug used to treat chronic pain and epilepsy, reduce ...

Recommended for you

Disrupted biological clock linked to Alzheimer's disease

date 1 hour ago

New research has identified some of the processes by which molecules associated with neurological diseases can disrupt the biological clock, interfere with sleep and activity patterns, and set the stage for ...

How the brain remembers pain

date 1 hour ago

Scientists from Berne have discovered a mechanism, which is responsible for the chronification of pain in the brain. The results of their study suggest new strategies for the medical treatment of chronic ...

Crossing fingers can reduce feelings of pain

date 21 hours ago

How you feel pain is affected by where sources of pain are in relation to each other, and so crossing your fingers can change what you feel on a single finger, finds new UCL research.

Research explains the formation of long-term motor memory

date 23 hours ago

Recent studies of long-term motor memory have pointed out the involvement of synaptic plasticity at multiple sites in the cerebellum, but the physiological mechanism remains unclear. Now results from a collaboration ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.