Confirmation that offspring from families with alcohol-dependent individuals have greater hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activation induced by naloxone compared with offspring without a family history of alcohol dependence

Gary Wand, Mary E. McCaul, Deidre Gotjen, Joanna Reynolds, Shing Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: This study was designed to confirm our previous findings that nonalcoholic offspring from families with alcohol-dependent individuals have greater hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis activation induced by opioid blockade compared with nonalcoholic subjects without a family history of alcohol dependence. Methods: Sixty-four nonalcoholic subjects aged 18 to 25 years were enrolled in the protocol. Twenty-seven subjects were offspring from families with alcohol dependence and were designated as family history-positive subjects (FHP). Thirty-seven subjects were biological offspring of non-alcohol-dependent parents and were designated as family history-negative subjects (FHN). Subjects received naloxone hydrochloride (0, 50, 125, 375, and 500 μg/kg) in double-blind, randomized order; adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) and cortisol were monitored over 120 min. Results: No hormone differences at baseline or during placebo administration were identified between FHP and FHN subjects. FHP subjects had greater ACTH and cortisol response to opioid receptor blockade induced by naloxone hydrochloride compared with FHN subjects. Conclusions: These observations confirm previous findings that differences in ACTH and cortisol dynamics between FHP and FHN subjects can be unmasked by opioid receptor blockade.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1134-1139
Number of pages6
JournalAlcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research
Volume25
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

Keywords

  • Adrenocorticotropin
  • Alcoholism
  • Cortisol
  • Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal Axis
  • Naloxone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Toxicology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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