Neurons know when your body had enough booze.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Recent research has shown that neurons detect when the alcohol consumption has reached a limit, and they send signals to the rest of the body to stop drinking.
It is known that high consumption of alcohol affects the function and physical structure of neurons located in the dorsomedial striatum, the part of the brain which scientists think that it’s associated with decision-making, more precisely initiation and action selection.
The important discovery consists of the fact that if a particular type of neuron, known as D1, is activated, we become aware if we had enough drinks or not. Experts compare neurons with a tree with many branches and small protrusions which allow these brain cells to be connected with one another.
Researchers discovered that every neuron has two dopamine receptors, called D1 andD2. When activated, D2 neurons tell us to do nothing, to stop, or to wait. According to Jun Wang, a scientist at Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine, D2 neurons are the ones that help us prevent addiction, so they stop drinking behavior.
It is worth mentioning that when the level of dopamine increases, the body tends to reject a type of food or beverages.
For instance, if we repeatedly eat French fries three days in a row, the dopamine level will boost, and your body will send you a message saying that you had too many French fries, so you will naturally refuse to eat them any longer.
However, when we have too many drinks, our D2 neurons are deactivated. But scientists discovered that these neurons could be manipulated. During the latest study, researchers managed to change the drinking behavior of animals who had been accustomed to drink alcohol.
When the D2 neurons were stimulated to activate, the alcohol consumption dropped off. This might be the beginning of a breakthrough in the medical field because alcohol addiction has already taken its toll on many American citizens throughout the United States.
There is a dangerous trend among the teenagers and students throughout the United States campuses, called ‘drunkorexia.’ This phenomenon manifest when a person skips meals and replaces them with alcohol, this way trying to lose weight and replace the calories from food with the ones from alcohol, which is not the same thing.
Researchers will continue their investigation on neurons hoping to understand more about the connection between them and drinking behavior.