Latest research has revealed the response to alcohol can be largely subject to the functioning of immunity cells that are present in the brain. After consumption of alcohol, a person experiences difficulty in coordination of brain and limbs, in addition to a major reduction of fine motor skills. The study carried on in Australia in the School of Medical Sciences, University of Adelaide, has found that the immune cells of the brain influence such irrational and unstable responses to alcohol.
According to Hutchison, the lead author of the study and a Fellow with the Australian Research Council said that alcohol poses severe harm to millions of people all over the world. According to statistics, two billion people all over the world consume alcohol, out of whom, alcohol abuse disorder or addiction to alcohol is diagnosed in seventy six million people annually. These patient are advisable to visit drug treatment centers for appropriate therapy. He also said that the exact response of the brain to alcohol is not yet known although innumerable studies have been carried on through many decades.
Laboratory mice were used for the current study. These mice were injected with one alcohol shot and their response was studied. TLR4, which is short for Toll-Like Receptor 4, was blocked. This receptor is present in the central nervous system and its function is to trigger the response of immune system when foreign particles are detected in the body. Since alcohol is a fermented product and contains yeast, the response to alcohol is also similar. The present research was aimed at finding out whether the blocking of this receptor would cause a change in alcohol behavior in the body and to find out if there are other receptors that alcohol blocks out.
In order to block the receptors, the scientists used chemically formulated TLR4 inhibitor drugs and genetic engineering in mice to bring passivity in the receptor. In the course of the experiments, it was found that blocking of the receptor caused a significant decrease in the effect of alcohol on the body. The study thus concluded that blocking the receptors could reduce the behavior effects of alcohol on the body. The experiments are yet to be confirmed on human body. The researcher said that this study would be useful in understanding how alcohol affects the body’s neural and immune systems.
The researchers stressed on the important of the study with regard to recognizing high risk patients. Medicines could be developed to target TLR4 receptor in order to provide effective treatment for alcohol overdose, abuse and addiction.