Signaling Pathways Mediating Alcohol Effects

  • Dorit Ron
  • Robert O. MessingEmail author
Part of the Current Topics in Behavioral Neurosciences book series (CTBN, volume 13)


Ethanol’s effects on intracellular signaling pathways contribute to acute effects of ethanol as well as to neuroadaptive responses to repeated ethanol exposure. In this chapter we review recent discoveries that demonstrate how ethanol alters signaling pathways involving several receptor tyrosine kinases and intracellular tyrosine and serine-threonine kinases, with consequences for regulation of cell surface receptor function, gene expression, protein translation, neuronal excitability and animal behavior. We also describe recent work that demonstrates a key role for ethanol in regulating the function of scaffolding proteins that organize signaling complexes into functional units. Finally, we review recent exciting studies demonstrating ethanol modulation of DNA and histone modification and the expression of microRNAs, indicating epigenetic mechanisms by which ethanol regulates neuronal gene expression and addictive behaviors.


Phosphorylation Signal transduction Growth factor Epigenetic Kinase 



The authors like to thank Carol Webb for editorial support.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Ernest Gallo Clinic and Research CenterUniversity of California San FranciscoEmeryvilleUSA

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