Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Chronic drinking can disrupt circadian rhythms

Date:
August 25, 2010
Source:
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research
Summary:
Circadian clock genes are key to regulating physiological and behavioral activities. Animal studies have shown that chronic drinking can disrupt expression in these genes. A human study has found an association between deregulation of circadian clock genes and chronic drinking.

Circadian rhythmicity is regulated by circadian clock genes, and animal studies have shown that chronic drinking can alter expressions in these genes. A new study has found that significantly lower levels of messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) -- a molecule of RNA that helps to manufacture proteins -- in circadian clock genes in alcohol-dependent (AD) patients support a relationship between circadian clock gene dysregulation and drinking in humans.

Related Articles


Results will be published in the November 2010 issue of Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research and are currently available at Early View.

"The body's daily biological, or circadian, rhythms modulate our physiological functions and related behaviors such as body temperature, hormone secretions, and sleep/wake cycle," explained Sy-Jye Leu, a researcher with the Taipei Medical University and corresponding author for the study. "Circadian rhythms are the outward manifestation of an internal timing system which is driven by several genetic elements, what we call circadian clock genes." The appropriate expression or regulation of these genes is necessary for any organism to efficiently "program" physiological and behavioral activities in order to ensure survival, she said.

"AD is related to circadian rhythm dysfunction such as sleep problems and mood changes," added Chian-Jue Kuo, attending psychiatrist and assistant professor at Taipei City Hospital. "This study is important because the authors used a clinical sample, instead of animal models, to look into circadian dysregulation in AD patients."

"Previous studies had demonstrated that alcohol could directly disrupt … neuronal transmission in the brain," said Leu. "This would, in turn, influence the activity of circadian clock genes and disturb circadian rhythm-related responses. Assessing the levels of mRNA offers a direct measurement of gene expression of the circadian clock genes, and we can simultaneously assess nearly all of them."

Leu and her colleagues examined blood samples from 22 male patients who met the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders -- Fourth Edition criteria for AD, as well as 12 healthy "control" subjects for comparison.

Results showed markedly lower baseline mRNA levels of the target circadian clock genes in the AD patients than in the control subjects, which indicates an overall lowering of circadian clock gene expression in individuals with chronic drinking.

"In other words, chronic alcohol consumption was associated with a destruction of normal circadian clock gene expression," said Leu. "This altered expression is closely related to circadian rhythm dysfunction and might link to a variety of physiological problems such as sleep/wake cycle dysregulation, depression, and even cancer."

In addition, said Leu, the reduced gene expression did not restore following early alcohol withdrawal treatment. "This provides the first human evidence that chronic drinking can have long-term damaging effects on the expression of circadian rhythm-responsible genes," she said. "It also lends clinical support to previous reports of circadian rhythm dysregulation as a consequence of chronic drinking."


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. Ming-Chyi Huang, Chia-Wei Ho, Chun-Hsin Chen, Shing-Cheng Liu, Chiao-Chicy Chen and Sy-Jye Leu. Reduced Expression of Circadian Clock Genes in Male Alcoholic Patients. Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, 24 August 2010 DOI: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2010.01278.x

Cite This Page:

Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. "Chronic drinking can disrupt circadian rhythms." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 25 August 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100824161428.htm>.
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. (2010, August 25). Chronic drinking can disrupt circadian rhythms. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100824161428.htm
Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. "Chronic drinking can disrupt circadian rhythms." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100824161428.htm (accessed April 18, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers found a spike in oxytocin occurs in both humans and dogs when they gaze into each other&apos;s eyes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers who analyzed data from over 300,000 kids and their mothers say they&apos;ve found a link between gestational diabetes and autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

AP (Apr. 17, 2015) Family members are prerecording messages as part of a unique pilot program at the Hebrew Home in New York. The videos are trying to help victims of Alzheimer&apos;s disease and other forms of dementia break through the morning fog of forgetfulness. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2015) Each week, millions of Americans take acetaminophen to dull minor aches and pains. Now researchers say it might blunt life&apos;s highs and lows, too. 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