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Subjective response to intravenous alcohol is predicted by initial sensitivity and recent drinking history in non-dependent drinkers

Wednesday, October 26, 2011 — Poster Session III

10:00 a.m. – Noon

Natcher Conference Center




  • ME Cooke
  • V Vatsalya
  • A Thiyagarajan
  • JM Gilman
  • DW Hommer
  • M Heilig
  • VA Ramchandani


The objective of this analysis was to examine the influence of recent drinking history, initial alcohol sensitivity and family history of alcoholism on the subjective response to IV alcohol in non-dependent drinkers. Data was obtained from IV-alcohol clamp studies in which participants (n=80) received 6% ethanol infusions to a target breath alcohol exposure of 0.08%. Subjective response was measured using the Drug Effects Questionnaire. Recent drinking history (RDH) was measured using Timeline Followback. Initial sensitivity to alcohol was measured using Self-Report of the Effects of Alcohol – First Five time–frame (SRE-FIRST). Family history of alcoholism was assessed using the Family Tree Questionnaire. As expected, RDH was a significant predictor of subjective response to alcohol, showing a positive relationship between RDH and subjective reports of “liking drug effects” and “wanting more drug.” SRE-FIRST was significantly associated with RDH measures, indicating that higher initial sensitivity to alcohol predicts recent drinking patterns. SRE-FIRST and family history of alcoholism independently predicted subjective response to alcohol, with no significant interactions. Measures of initial sensitivity and recent drinking history both predict subjective response to acute IV alcohol administration in non-dependent drinkers.

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