Effects of Long-term adolescent alcohol consumption on white matter integrity and their correlations with metabolic alterations
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CitationShen, Qin. Heikkinen, Noora. Kärkkäinen, Olli. Gröhn, Heidi. Könönen, Mervi. Liu, Yawu. Kaarre, Outi. Zhang, Zishu. Tan, Changlian. Tolmunen, Tommi. Vanninen, Ritva. (2019). Effects of Long-term adolescent alcohol consumption on white matter integrity and their correlations with metabolic alterations. Psychiatry research: neuroimaging, 294, 111003. 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2019.111003.
Alcohol-related white matter (WM) microstructural changes have not been fully elucidated in adolescents. We aimed to investigate influences of subclinical alcohol use during adolescence on WM microstructure and to characterize those with serum metabolic alterations. 35 moderate-to-heavy drinkers (15 males, 20 females) and 27 controls (12 males, 15 females) were selected based on their ten-year Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Test scores measured at three time points. Magnetic resonance imaging was conducted at endpoint time. Whole brain analysis of fractional anisotropy (FA) was performed. Diffusivity indices in the significant regions were computed for between-group comparisons and correlation analyses with serum metabolite concentrations. Decreased FA was found in moderate-to-heavy drinking men in anterior corpus callosum, superior/anterior corona radiata and right inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus, accompanied by increased radial diffusivity and a smaller area of reduced axial diffusivity, which correlated with serum metabolites playing roles in energy metabolism, myelination and axonal degeneration. No significant difference in FA was detected between female or mixed-gender moderate-to-heavy drinking subjects and controls, supporting gender differences in the relationship between adolescent alcohol use and neurodevelopmental trajectories. Future researches with longitudinal imaging data are warranted for comprehensive evaluation on potentially reversible effects of alcohol use over adolescent brain.