Drinking alcohol during pregnancyWhen a woman drinks alcohol during her pregnancy, even a small dose, she is increasing the chances that the next three generations may develop alcoholism.
This is according to a new study (on rats) from Binghamton University.
For the study, pregnant rats received the equivalent of one glass of wine, four days in a row, at gestational days 17-20, the equivalent of the second trimester in humans.
Juvenile male and female offspring were then tested for water or alcohol consumption. Adolescent males were tested for sensitivity to alcohol by injecting them with a high-alcohol dose, which made them unresponsive (drunk on their back), and measuring the time it took them to recover their senses (back on their four paws).
The results suggest that if a mother drinks during pregnancy, even just a little bit, she increases the risk that her progeny will become alcoholic.
One glass of wine may be too much"Our findings show that in the rat, when a mother consumes the equivalent of one glass of wine four times during the pregnancy, her offspring and grand-offspring, up to the third generation, show increased alcohol preference and less sensitivity to alcohol," said Nicole Cameron, lead researcher and assistant professor of psychology at Binghamton University. "Thus, the offspring are more likely to develop alcoholism. This paper is the first to demonstrate trans-generational effects of alcohol consumption during pregnancy on alcohol-related behaviour in offspring."
Source: Binghamton University via Sciencedaily.com