News FocusNeurobiology

Does Alcohol Damage Female Brains More?

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Science  16 Mar 2001:
Vol. 291, Issue 5511, pp. 2077-2079
DOI: 10.1126/science.291.5511.2077

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As researchers begin to probe this question, they are finding surprising and sometimes contradictory evidence that there are sex-specific differences in alcohol's effects on the brain. Using increasingly precise molecular and brain imaging techniques, neuroscientists have been scrutinizing brains of both men and women, as well as of male and female rats. The findings reinforce the idea that biological differences between male and female brains contribute to increased damage in women, including larger reductions in brain volume and increases in cerebrospinal fluid volume.