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Drinking alcohol 'decreases brain cell regeneration'

Drinking alcohol 'decreases brain cell regeneration'
25th October 2012

Drinking a moderate amount of alcohol can have an impact on the ability of brain cells to regenerate, according to new research.

The study, which was conducted at Rutgers University, suggests that even drinking a couple of glasses of wine each day could decrease the creation of adult brain cells by as much as 40 per cent.

Lead author Megan Anderson, a graduate student working in behavioral and systems neuroscience in the Department of Psychology at Rutgers, stated moderate drinking can become binge drinking without the person being aware of the change.

She said: "In the short term there may not be any noticeable motor skills or overall functioning problems, but in the long term this type of behavior could have an adverse effect on learning and memory."

Postdoctoral fellow Miriam Nokia from the University of Jyvaskyla in Finland collaborated on the research, which found brain cell production was affected negatively by alcohol consumption in rodents.

A recent study conducted at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine and San Diego State University uncovered a link between a family history of alcoholism and the damaging effects of prenatal alcohol exposure.

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