How Does the Thirst-Making Effect of Alcohol Come About?

  • Author: Marek Czykanski
  • Published: 21 April 2018
  • Copyright: Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA
  • Source / Publisher: Cell Metabolism/Elsevier Inc.
thumbnail image: How Does the Thirst-Making Effect of Alcohol Come About?

Steven Kliewer and David J. Mangelsdorf, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, USA, and colleagues have explored this question: The consumption of alcohol in mice stimulates the production of a specific hormone called FGF21 in the liver. To clarify whether this hormone is related to the onset of thirst, the team examined two groups of mice: "normal" and genetically engineered mice that could not produce FGF21.

Under normal diet, all animals drank about the same amount of water. When the mice got food that had a similar effect on the nutrient balance in the body as alcohol, the mice from the control group drank more water. The fluid intake in the genetically modified mice did not change. The release of FGF21 stimulates the thirst center in the hypothalamus of the animal's brain, thus preventing dehydration caused by the diuretic effect of alcohol. At the same time, the desire to continue drinking alcohol is suppressed.

The concentration of liver hormone in human subjects also increased after they had drunk a mixed drink of alcohol and juice. The FGF21 level reached its highest value after two hours, before slowly dropping off again. The consumption of pure juice, on the other hand, caused no release of the messenger substance.

FGF21 may one day be used as a drug to prevent over-consumption of alcohol and its consequences.


 

Article Views: 717

Sign in Area

Please sign in below

Additional Sign In options

Please note that to comment on an article you must be registered and logged in.
Registration is for free, you may already be registered to receive, e.g., the newsletter. When you register on this website, please ensure you view our terms and conditions. All comments are subject to moderation.

Article Comments - To add a comment please sign in

Bookmark and Share

If you would like to reuse any content, in print or online, from ChemistryViews.org, please contact us first for permission. more


CONNECT:

ChemistryViews.org on Facebook

ChemistryViews.org on Twitter ChemistryViews.org on YouTube ChemistryViews.org on LinkedIn Sign up for our free newsletter


A product of ChemPubSoc Europe (16 European Chemical Societies)and Wiley-VCH