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Drosophila as a Model for Alcoholism: An Interplay of Nature and Nurture

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Air date: Wednesday, May 07, 2014, 3:00:00 PM
Time displayed is Eastern Time, Washington DC Local
Views: Total views: 241, (64 Live, 177 On-demand)
Category: WALS - Wednesday Afternoon Lectures
Runtime: 00:56:22
Description: Alcohol is one of the most widely used and abused drugs in the world, with devastating medical and social consequences. The estimated prevalence of Alcohol Use Disorders is 8.5 percent in the United States, thus affecting more than 17 million Americans. The difficulty and cost of human studies have led to the development of animal models to investigate the genetic, molecular, and neural mechanisms underlying both the short- and long-term effects of ethanol. Rodent models have been most widely used and have provided important insights into these mechanisms. More recently, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster has been developed as a model to study the effects of ethanol. The experimental and genetic accessibility of Drosophila makes it an ideal organism to study molecular, cellular and neurobiological processes, most of which are conserved between flies and mammals.

During acute ethanol exposure, adult flies exhibit locomotor hyperactivity followed by motor incoordination and sedation. Repeated ethanol exposures can induce either tolerance or sensitization in adult flies, depending on the behavioral response being measured; chronic ethanol exposure induces alcohol dependence and relapse-like behavior. In addition, flies exhibit more complex addiction-like behaviors, including a lasting attraction for a cue that predicts ethanol intoxication and a preference for consuming ethanol-containing food even if it’s made unpalatable.

In addition to a discussion about the validity of Drosophila as a model for alcoholism, the lecture will include an analysis of genetic and environmental/experiential factors that contribute to alcohol-induced behaviors.

For more information go to http://wals.od.nih.gov
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NLM Title: Drosophila as a model for alcoholism : an interplay of nature and nurture / Ulrike Heberlein.
Series: NIH Wednesday afternoon lecture
Author: Heberlein, Ulrike.
National Institutes of Health (U.S.),
Publisher:
Other Title(s): NIH Wednesday afternoon lecture
Abstract: (CIT): Alcohol is one of the most widely used and abused drugs in the world, with devastating medical and social consequences. The estimated prevalence of Alcohol Use Disorders is 8.5 percent in the United States, thus affecting more than 17 million Americans. The difficulty and cost of human studies have led to the development of animal models to investigate the genetic, molecular, and neural mechanisms underlying both the short- and long-term effects of ethanol. Rodent models have been most widely used and have provided important insights into these mechanisms. More recently, the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster has been developed as a model to study the effects of ethanol. The experimental and genetic accessibility of Drosophila makes it an ideal organism to study molecular, cellular and neurobiological processes, most of which are conserved between flies and mammals. During acute ethanol exposure, adult flies exhibit locomotor hyperactivity followed by motor incoordination and sedation. Repeated ethanol exposures can induce either tolerance or sensitization in adult flies, depending on the behavioral response being measured; chronic ethanol exposure induces alcohol dependence and relapse-like behavior. In addition, flies exhibit more complex addiction-like behaviors, including a lasting attraction for a cue that predicts ethanol intoxication and a preference for consuming ethanol-containing food even if it"s made unpalatable. In addition to a discussion about the validity of Drosophila as a model for alcoholism, the lecture will include an analysis of genetic and environmental/experiential factors that contribute to alcohol-induced behaviors.For more information go to http://wals.od.nih.gov.
Subjects: Alcoholism--physiopathology
Drosophila--drug effects
Models, Animal
Publication Types: Lectures
Webcasts
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NLM Classification: WM 274
NLM ID: 101634133
CIT Live ID: 14146
Permanent link: http://videocast.nih.gov/launch.asp?18426