OBJECTIVES: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) due to prenatal ethanol consumption may induce long-lasting changes to the newborns affecting also the endocrine system and the nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) signaling. Thus the aim of this study was to investigate in the thyroid, testis and adrenal glands of a FASD mouse model the long-lasting effects of ethanol exposure during pregnancy and lactation on NGF and BDNF and their main receptors, TrkA and TrkB, including their phosphorylated patterns.
METHODS: We used aged male CD-1 mice early exposed to ethanol solution or red wine at same ethanol concentration (11% vol).
RESULTS: We found elevations in NGF and BDNF in the thyroid of aged mice exposed to ethanol solution only but not in the red wine group. In the testis NGF resulted to be increased only in the ethanol solution group. In the adrenal glands data showed an elevation in NGF in both the ethanol solution group and red wine. No changes in TrkA, TrkB, phospho-TrkA and phospho-TrkB were revealed in all tissues examined.
CONCLUSIONS: Early administration of ethanol may induce long-lasting changes in the mouse thyroid, testis and adrenal glands at NGF and BDNF levels.
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