Commentary: Studies on Binge-Like Ethanol Drinking May Help to Identify the Neurobiological Mechanisms Underlying the Transition to Dependence
Article first published online: 27 JAN 2012
Copyright © 2012 by the Research Society on Alcoholism
Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Volume 36, Issue 2, pages 193–196, February 2012
How to Cite
Thiele, T. E. (2012), Commentary: Studies on Binge-Like Ethanol Drinking May Help to Identify the Neurobiological Mechanisms Underlying the Transition to Dependence. Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, 36: 193–196. doi: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2011.01734.x
- Issue published online: 27 JAN 2012
- Article first published online: 27 JAN 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 13 DEC 2011
- Manuscript Received: 9 SEP 2011
- NIH. Grant Numbers: AA013573, AA015148, AA017803
- CRF-1 Receptor;
The goals of this commentary are to discuss the important contributions of the work by Kaur and colleagues titled “Corticotropin-releasing factor acting on corticotropin-releasing factor receptor type 1 is critical for binge alcohol drinking in mice,” published in this issue of Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, and to highlight the importance of preclinical research aimed at identifying the neurobiology of binge ethanol drinking.
Methods and Results:
The work by Kaur and colleagues provides an important extension of previous pharmacological evidence implicating the corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) type-1 receptor (CRF1R) in binge-like ethanol drinking by verifying the role of the CRF1R using genetic tools, and by establishing that CRF, but not urocortin 1 (Ucn1), is the primary neuropeptide associated with the CRF system that modulates binge-like ethanol drinking in C57BL/6J mice.
It is suggested that the evidence for a critical role of the CRF1R in excessive ethanol intake observed in both models of binge-like ethanol drinking and dependence-like ethanol intake indicates that overlapping mechanisms may be involved, and that studies that employ models of binge-like ethanol drinking may provide insight into the neurobiological mechanisms that underlie the transition to ethanol dependence.