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Homocysteine and alcohol consumption

Esen Uz, Demet Dankı, Nesrin Dilbaz.

The plasma concentration of homocysteine concentration can change
due to alcohol intake. While the effect of moderate alcohol
consumption on the concentration of homocysteine, and on the
cardiovascular and neurological diseases is consistent, the excessive
alcohol consumption is associated with an increased plasma
homocysteine level. Clinical signs in alcohol withdrawal syndrome
are explained by over stimulation of NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate)
receptors. Elevated levels of homocysteine demonstrate an agonistic
effect at postsynaptic level and cause convulsion and exititoxic
neuronal death. Some research findings imply a possible relationship
of neurological and cardiovascular diseases with homocysteine
levels. There may be connection between cortical, subcortical and
cerebellar changes in alcohol dependency and
hyperhomocysteinemia. Folate deficiency may be responsible for
hyperhomocysteinemia and a risk factor for cardiovascular and
cerebrovascular diseases. Literature data suggest that there is a
correlation between hyperhomocysteinemia and other psychiatric
diseases. Studies are needed to clarify the ethiopathogenetic
relationship between hyperhomocysteinemia and the comorbidity of
alcohol dependency and some psychiatric diseases. In this article the
literature on relationship between homocysteine and alcohol
consumption has been reviewed since 1985 with using database
search for alcohol dependence and homocysteine relationship.

Key words: Alcohol consumption, homocysteine, folate, NMDA, alcohol withdrawal syndrome

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Journal of Behavioral Health


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