Scientists have long come to the conclusion that addiction to alcohol is associated with reduced brain volume.
However, the new study showed that the decrease in brain volume is a risk factor for development of alcohol dependence.
It turned out that there are genetic factors that lead to a reduction in the size of the brain and development of alcohol dependence. Researchers believe that this may be useful in early identification of degrees of alcohol dependence.
Scientists have analyzed images of the brain of twins from infancy to adulthood, and found genetically determined reduction in the volume of gray matter in the frontal cortex and islets, which were indicators of the future development of addiction to alcohol.
To confirm a genetic link between brain size and alcohol use, the panel reviewed data from one – and with fraternal twins with different histories of alcohol consumption.
One with fraternal twins, who liked to drink, had less gray matter in the brain. As for identical twins, the study revealed no differences, but they both looked much drinking.