Alcohol, the cause of approximately 13,000 cancer incidences each year, now appears linked with a particular gene in women. A latest research undertaken by the King’s College London Institute of Psychiatry claims that the gene Adenylyl Cyclase Type 7 plays a crucial role in the molecular pathways contributing to alcohol drinking and the development of alcohol dependence among women. The research findings can apparently assist in gauging ways to avoid alcohol dependence.
In the initial stages of the research, experts discovered that female mice lacking this gene drank more alcohol and indeed preferred alcohol to water, but the males did not. This outcome was then put to test in 1703 alcohol dependent people. It then appeared that a particular variant of this gene was less common in alcoholic women as compared to controls.
“It is already known that genes play a part in alcohol dependence however to date only a few have been identified. Our research would suggest that this variant would be one factor which might protect women from alcohol dependency. Although we know that many other factors are important for development of alcohol dependence and these may differ for men and women,” shared Dr Sylvance Desrivieres.
The gene Adenylyl Cyclase Type 7 is believably responsible for transmitting signals from outside of a cell, as part of a cascade of activity necessary for normal function of certain brain cells. It probably is the first gene to be linked with alcohol dependence among women. Understanding this gene can supposedly open doors to novel pharmacological therapies or targets for therapies.
The research is published in Biological Psychiatry.