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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 67  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 12-17

The association of plasma acyl ghrelin level with alcohol craving in early abstinent alcohol dependent patients

1 Department of Psychiatry, Central Institute of Psychiatry, Ranchi, Jharkhand, India
2 Department of Biochemistry, Central Institute of Psychiatry, Ranchi, Jharkhand, India

Correspondence Address:
P Dey
Department of Psychiatry, Central Institute of Psychiatry, Ranchi, Jharkhand
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jpgm.JPGM_1018_20

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Background: Craving plays an important role in maintenance of alcohol dependence. Earlier studies have analyzed the role of ghrelin in craving and their results have been heterogenous. Acyl ghrelin is its more active form as it crosses the blood brain barrier. Hence we aimed to examine the relationship between plasma acyl ghrelin and craving in Indian patients having alcohol dependence syndrome. Methods: The present study was a hospital-based prospective study. A total of 60 drug-naive patients of alcohol dependence and 30 healthy controls were included. After taking informed consent fasting blood samples were collected from them on day 1 and tested for plasma acyl ghrelin level. Fasting blood samples were repeated in all cases on day 14. During this time, we also assessed the patients' cravings by obsessive compulsive drinking scale, and alcohol craving questionnaire; and withdrawal by clinical institute withdrawal assessment for alcohol scale. These scales were repeated on day 14. Data analysis was done by SPSS version 25.0. Results: Plasma concentrations of acyl ghrelin increased significantly during early abstinence in patients from day 1 to day 14 (P < 0.0001). Pearson correlation test revealed a trend of positive correlation between plasma concentration of acyl ghrelin on day 14 and severity of craving on day 1. Conclusion: Our results suggest the plasma concentration of acyl ghrelin may be a predictor of severity of alcohol craving during early abstinence. Anti-craving drugs acting on acyl ghrelin level in brain may open an innovative avenue for optimum treatment of alcohol dependence.


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Online since 12th February '04
2004 - Journal of Postgraduate Medicine
Official Publication of the Staff Society of the Seth GS Medical College and KEM Hospital, Mumbai, India
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow