Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

High Novelty-seeking And Low Avoidance Of Harm Contribute To Alcohol Dependence

Date:
March 5, 2009
Source:
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research
Summary:
Individuals with the inactive form of aldehyde dehydrogenase-2 normally don't drink alcohol because it causes flushing, nausea, and headaches. A new study asks why some people with the inactive form of ALDH2 become alcohol dependent. Results show these individuals have significantly higher novelty-seeking and lower harm-avoidance traits.

Personality factors can influence the development of alcohol dependence (AD). Researchers examined a group of AD individuals with the inactive form of aldehyde dehydrogenase-2 (ALDH2) – persons who would normally have a low incidence of alcoholism because the inactive form of ALDH2 causes flushing, nausea, and headaches. Results indicate that a strong need for novelty and little need for avoiding harm appear to increase the risk of AD.

Related Articles


"Some case-control studies have shown that high novelty-seeking (NS) and low harm-avoidance (HA) are associated with alcoholism," said Mitsuru Kimura, chief of the department of psychiatry and section of behavioral science at the National Hospital Organization. "But a personality profile associated with alcoholism is not well-established. This is the first study that demonstrates there is a difference between personality profiles of alcoholics with inactive and active form of ALDH2 polymorphism." Kimura is also the corresponding author for the study.

"Alcoholism is usually subtyped by clinical features, such as Type I vs. Type II or Type A vs. Type B," explained Ihn-Geun Choi, professor and chair of the department of neuropsychiatry at Hallym University College of Medicine in South Korea. "Researchers categorized alcoholics according to alcohol-metabolizing enzyme activities and studied their relevance to personality traits. This [study] is a new perspective of categorizing clinically similar alcoholics who were believed to have the same subtypes and personality profiles."

Researchers interviewed and genotyped 460 male Japanese alcoholics who had been hospitalized at the Kurihama Alcoholism Center. All patients filled out the Tridimensional Personality Questionnaire (TPQ). Of the total, 66 patients had the inactive form of ALDH2 (ALDH2*1/2*2), and 394 had the active form (ALDH2*1/2*1).

"Individuals who became alcoholics in spite of having a strong negative risk factor, the inactive type of ALDH2, revealed a characteristic personality profile, that is, higher NS and lower HA compared with those who had the active type of ALDH2," said Kimura. "This tells us that high NS and low HA are predisposing factors for alcoholism." High NS and low HA scores tend to reflect impulsive, danger-seeking, and aggressive personalities, he added.

"Alcoholism is a complex disease with multiple causes," noted Choi. "Personality traits are both inborn and acquired, and genetic and environmental factors are also important for developing alcoholism. If your child is aggressive or impulsive, perhaps it would be wise to refrain from allowing him or her to drink."

"This study shows the alcoholics with inactive ALDH2 are a unique group with perhaps stronger risk factors for alcoholism," said Kimura. "Since the inactive ALDH2 group tended to have less familial alcoholic history, a study of alcoholics with inactive ALDH2 could be useful for detecting environmental or personality factors related to alcoholism."

Co-authors of the paper were: Toru Sawayama of the Department of Psychiatry at Kitasato University School of Medicine; Sachio Matsushita and Susumu Higuchi of the Kurihama Alcoholism Center at the National Hospital Organization; and Haruo Kashima of the Department of Neuropsychiatry in the School of Medicine at Keio University, all in Japan.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Association between Personality Traits and ALDH2 polymorphism in Japanese Male Alcoholics. Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, May 2009

Cite This Page:

Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. "High Novelty-seeking And Low Avoidance Of Harm Contribute To Alcohol Dependence." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 March 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090303161303.htm>.
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. (2009, March 5). High Novelty-seeking And Low Avoidance Of Harm Contribute To Alcohol Dependence. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 19, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090303161303.htm
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. "High Novelty-seeking And Low Avoidance Of Harm Contribute To Alcohol Dependence." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090303161303.htm (accessed December 19, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Friday, December 19, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Prenatal Exposure To Pollution Might Increase Autism Risk

Newsy (Dec. 18, 2014) Harvard researchers found children whose mothers were exposed to high pollution levels in the third trimester were twice as likely to develop autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Yoga Could Be As Beneficial For The Heart As Walking, Biking

Newsy (Dec. 17, 2014) Yoga can help your weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and heart just as much as biking and walking does, a new study suggests. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins