Some heavy drinkers suffer intense withdrawal symptoms when they try to stop drinking – some, less so. A new Yale-led international study of individuals with alcohol dependence has identified gene variants that may help explain why “detox” from alcohol is particularly difficult for some people.
The researchers reported their findings on 25 September in the journal Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, the official journal of the Research Society on Alcoholism.
“Alcohol takes more lives in the United States and South Africa every year than opioids, but there are few effective treatments to help people who have an alcohol use disorder,” said Andrew H. Smith, lead author of the study and a research affiliate in the laboratory of senior author Joel Gelernter, Foundations Fund Professor of Psychiatry and Professor of Genetics and of Neuroscience. “For people who experience intense withdrawal symptoms, that’s one more barrier they have to face while