Binge drinking can amplify live damage

Posted on October 10, 2014

University of Missouri researchers discovered binge drinking or over-consumption of alcohol is especially dangerous among those who already drink a lot. It can lead to changes in liver proteins that may result in cirrhosis and cancer.

Binge drinking is defined as a pattern of drinking that brings a person’s blood alcohol concentration to 0.08 grams percent or above. This typically happens when men consume five or more drinks or women consume four or more drinks over a two-hour period.

Binge drinking appears to cause genetic changes in tissues of the liver. Latest research shows that epigenetic modifications in histone structures occur within the liver as a result of heavy binge drinking. Epigenetic alterations are changes in genes that are not caused by changes in the DNA sequence or genetic code. A modification of histones adversely affect how a person’s genetic code is interpreted and how it is regulated.

Binge drinking also can create an inflammatory response in the liver that is like a cluster bomb, sending out various damaging signals to other organ systems in the body. If those organs are working at a lower level of function, then a whole host of physiological processes are affected as a consequence of binge drinking.

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Source material from Psych Central