Cycles of alcohol and stress are hypothesized to contribute to alcohol use disorders. How this occurs is poorly understood, although both alcohol and stress activate the neuroimmune system – the immune molecules and cells that interact with the nervous system. The effects of alcohol and stress on the neuroimmune system are mediated in part by peripheral signaling molecules.
Parkinson's disease (PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by prominent loss of the nigral dopaminergic neurons and motor symptoms, such as resting tremor and bradykinesia. Evidence suggests that neuroinflammation may play a critical role in PD pathogenesis.
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by the presence of parenchymal amyloid-beta (Aβ) plaques, cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) and neurofibrillary tangles. Currently there are no effective treatments for AD. Immunotherapeutic approaches under development are hampered by complications related to ineffectual clearance of CAA.
Serotonergic neurons of the raphe nucleus regulate sleep, mood, endocrine function, and other processes that mature during adolescence. Alcohol abuse and binge drinking are common during human adolescence. We tested the novel hypothesis that adolescent intermittent ethanol exposure would alter the serotonergic system that would persist into adulthood.