In 34 chronic alcoholics, subdivided into two groups according to the state of the blood-brain barrier (BBB), β-lipotropin (β-LPH), β-endorphin (β-EP), ACTH and cortisol levels were determined in basal conditions in the plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). Hormonal concentrations were correlated with brain damage and mnesic function. The results indicate the reduced CSF β-EP content in chronic alcoholics and suggest that peripheral β-EP may penetrate into the CSF compartment when there is BBB damage. They also sustain the different origins of central and peripheral pro-opiocortin-related peptides, and support the concept that β-EP, β-LPH and ACTH may be autonomously regulated at the central level. Moreover, both morphological brain damage and mnesic impairment in chronic alcoholics are unrelated to CSF peptide levels. The role of opioid peptides in the nature of alcohol-seeking behavior is supported.
- Adrenocorticotropic hormone
- Cerebrospinal fluid
- Computerized tomography findings
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology