The effects of ethanol on the dopaminergic system in the rat brain have been studied measuring the levels of dihyroxyphenylacetic acid (DOPAC) and the function of the specific dopaminergic receptors. We found that the acute ethanol administration increases DOPAC concentrations in the rat striatum. Moreover, the injection of Naloxone, which is a specific antagonist of opiate receptors, blocks the effects of alcohol on dopamine metabolism. The explanation of these results may be found in the light of the theory which proposes the existence of common mechanisms for ethanol and opiates in the brain. The data presented in the paper confirm the important role of a neuronal dopaminergic-enkephalinergic interaction in the biochemical and behavioural changes induced by ethanol.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Substance and Alcohol Actions/Misuse|
|Publication status||Published - 1980|
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