Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers

Chrysa Lithari, Manousos A. Klados, Costas Pappas, Maria Albani, Dorothea Kapoukranidou, Leda Kovatsi, Panagiotis D. Bamidis, Christos L. Papadelis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Acute alcohol intake is known to enhance inhibition through facilitation of GABAA receptors, which are present in 40% of the synapses all over the brain. Evidence suggests that enhanced GABAergic transmission leads to increased large-scale brain connectivity. Our hypothesis is that acute alcohol intake would increase the functional connectivity of the human brain resting-state network (RSN). To test our hypothesis, electroencephalographic (EEG) measurements were recorded from healthy social drinkers at rest, during eyes-open and eyes-closed sessions, after administering to them an alcoholic beverage or placebo respectively. Salivary alcohol and cortisol served to measure the inebriation and stress levels. By calculating Magnitude Square Coherence (MSC) on standardized Low Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography (sLORETA) solutions, we formed cortical networks over several frequency bands, which were then analyzed in the context of functional connectivity and graph theory. MSC was increased (p<0.05, corrected with False Discovery Rate, FDR corrected) in alpha, beta (eyes-open) and theta bands (eyes-closed) following acute alcohol intake. Graph parameters were accordingly altered in these bands quantifying the effect of alcohol on the structure of brain networks; global efficiency and density were higher and path length was lower during alcohol (vs. placebo, p<0.05). Salivary alcohol concentration was positively correlated with the density of the network in beta band. The degree of specific nodes was elevated following alcohol (vs. placebo). Our findings support the hypothesis that short-term inebriation considerably increases large-scale connectivity in the RSN. The increased baseline functional connectivity can -at least partially- be attributed to the alcohol-induced disruption of the delicate balance between inhibitory and excitatory neurotransmission in favor of inhibitory influences. Thus, it is suggested that short-term inebriation is associated, as expected, to increased GABA transmission and functional connectivity, while long-term alcohol consumption may be linked to exactly the opposite effect.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere48641
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume7
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2012

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social networks
Social Support
Brain
alcohols
Alcohols
brain
eyes
placebos
Placebos
alcoholic beverages
tomography
synapse
cortisol
Alcoholic Beverages
Electromagnetic Phenomena
GABA-A Receptors
Graph theory
Synaptic Transmission
Alcohol Drinking
Synapses

Bibliographical note

© 2012 Lithari et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits
unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Cite this

Lithari, C., Klados, M. A., Pappas, C., Albani, M., Kapoukranidou, D., Kovatsi, L., ... Papadelis, C. L. (2012). Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers. PLoS ONE, 7(10), [e48641]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0048641
Lithari, Chrysa ; Klados, Manousos A. ; Pappas, Costas ; Albani, Maria ; Kapoukranidou, Dorothea ; Kovatsi, Leda ; Bamidis, Panagiotis D. ; Papadelis, Christos L. / Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers. In: PLoS ONE. 2012 ; Vol. 7, No. 10.
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Lithari, C, Klados, MA, Pappas, C, Albani, M, Kapoukranidou, D, Kovatsi, L, Bamidis, PD & Papadelis, CL 2012, 'Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers', PLoS ONE, vol. 7, no. 10, e48641. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0048641

Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers. / Lithari, Chrysa; Klados, Manousos A.; Pappas, Costas; Albani, Maria; Kapoukranidou, Dorothea; Kovatsi, Leda; Bamidis, Panagiotis D.; Papadelis, Christos L.

In: PLoS ONE, Vol. 7, No. 10, e48641, 31.10.2012.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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AU - Kapoukranidou, Dorothea

AU - Kovatsi, Leda

AU - Bamidis, Panagiotis D.

AU - Papadelis, Christos L.

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Lithari C, Klados MA, Pappas C, Albani M, Kapoukranidou D, Kovatsi L et al. Alcohol Affects the Brain's Resting-State Network in Social Drinkers. PLoS ONE. 2012 Oct 31;7(10). e48641. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0048641