Effects of concurrent access to multiple ethanol concentrations and repeated deprivations on alcohol intake of high-alcohol-drinking (HAD) rats

Zachary A. Rodd, Richard L. Bell, Kelly A. Kuc, James M. Murphy, Lawrence Lumeng, William J. McBride

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40 Scopus citations


High-alcohol-drinking rats, given access to 10% ethanol, expressed an alcohol deprivation effect (ADE) only after multiple deprivations. In alcohol-preferring (P) rats, concurrent access to multiple ethanol concentrations combined with repeated cycles of EtOH access and deprivation produced excessive ethanol drinking. The current study was undertaken to examine the effects of repeated alcohol deprivations with concurrent access to multiple concentrations of ethanol on ethanol intake of HAD replicate lines of rats. HAD-1 and HAD-2 rats received access to 10, 20 and 30% (v/v) ethanol for 6 weeks. Rats from each replicate line were assigned to: (1) a non-deprived group; (2) a group initially deprived of ethanol for 2 weeks; or (3) a group initially deprived for 8 weeks. Following the restoration of the ethanol solutions, cycle of 2 weeks of ethanol exposure and 2 weeks of alcohol deprivation was repeated three times for a total of four deprivations. Following the initial ethanol deprivation period, deprived groups significantly increased ethanol intakes during the initial 24-hour re-exposure period. Multiple deprivations increased ethanol intakes, shifted preference to higher ethanol concentrations and prolonged the duration of the elevated ethanol intakes for up to 5 days. In addition, repeated deprivations increased ethanol intake in the first 2-hour re-exposure period as high as 5-7 g/kg (which are equivalent to amounts consumed in 24 hours by HAD rats), and produced blood ethanol levels in excess of 150 mg%. The results indicate that HAD rats exhibit 'loss-of-control' of alcohol drinking with repeated deprivations when multiple ethanol concentrations are available.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)152-164
Number of pages13
JournalAddiction Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2009



  • Alcohol deprivation effect
  • Alcohol relapse
  • High-alcohol-drinking rats
  • Loss of control
  • Multiple deprivations
  • Sensitization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology

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