The overall strategy of the INIA-Stress consortium is to take a cross-species approach to define adaptations of the cortical-limbic-HPA axis produced by excessive alcohol exposure as a platform for studying the reciprocal relationship between stress and excessive drinking. This project proposes to define the status of monoamine neurotransmission and GABAergic neuroactive steroid responsivity in key brain structures involved in stress, motivation, reinforcement and ultimately the regulation of excessive ethanol drinking. It will serve as one node for comparison of monkey and mouse tissues, with microarray, genetic, electrophysiology and HPA axis measures serving as other nodes. The overarching hypothesis of this project is that chronic ethanol exposure produces monoamine system adaptations which reduce activity during abstinence, leading to a state of low monoamine function which would produce dysphoria and potentially a drive to consume alcohol. Further, we predict that these adaptations are exacerbated by subsequent exposure to stress. Of particular interest is the novel finding that KORs become supersensitive during chronic ethanol exposure, especially given the efficacy of naltrexone, a non-selective opioid receptor antagonist, in treating alcoholism.
Four aims are proposed, including 1) DA changes after chronic intermittent ethanol (CIE) exposure in mice and monkeys 2) CIE followed by forced swim stress in mice 3) Monoamine tissue levels in mice and monkeys and 4) GABAergic neuroactive steroids response to CIE and stress.
These aims will provide a comprehensive assessment of monoamine changes induced by chronic ethanol exposure and the differential impact of a stress challenge on a background of chronic ethanol adaptations.

Public Health Relevance

Defining the critical adaptations in monoamine systems induced by chronic EtOH exposure and their relationship to subsequent stress/anxiety will be a major step forward in creating clinical interventions that could prevent the most common deterrent to recovery from alcoholism - stress-induced relapse.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
Research Project--Cooperative Agreements (U01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZAA1)
Program Officer
Grandison, Lindsey
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Wake Forest University Health Sciences
Schools of Medicine
United States
Zip Code
Siciliano, Cody A; Locke, Jason L; Mathews, Tiffany A et al. (2017) Dopamine synthesis in alcohol drinking-prone and -resistant mouse strains. Alcohol 58:25-32
Melchior, James R; Jones, Sara R (2017) Chronic ethanol exposure increases inhibition of optically targeted phasic dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens core and medial shell ex vivo. Mol Cell Neurosci 85:93-104
Salvatore, Michael F; Calipari, Erin S; Jones, Sara R (2016) Regulation of Tyrosine Hydroxylase Expression and Phosphorylation in Dopamine Transporter-Deficient Mice. ACS Chem Neurosci 7:941-51
Siciliano, Cody A; Calipari, Erin S; Yorgason, Jordan T et al. (2016) Chronic ethanol self-administration in macaques shifts dopamine feedback inhibition to predominantly D2 receptors in nucleus accumbens core. Drug Alcohol Depend 158:159-63
Siciliano, Cody A; Calipari, Erin S; Yorgason, Jordan T et al. (2016) Increased presynaptic regulation of dopamine neurotransmission in the nucleus accumbens core following chronic ethanol self-administration in female macaques. Psychopharmacology (Berl) 233:1435-43
Karkhanis, Anushree N; Huggins, Kimberly N; Rose, Jamie H et al. (2016) Switch from excitatory to inhibitory actions of ethanol on dopamine levels after chronic exposure: Role of kappa opioid receptors. Neuropharmacology 110:190-197
Rose, Jamie H; Karkhanis, Anushree N; Chen, Rong et al. (2016) Supersensitive Kappa Opioid Receptors Promotes Ethanol Withdrawal-Related Behaviors and Reduce Dopamine Signaling in the Nucleus Accumbens. Int J Neuropsychopharmacol 19:
Cervera-Juanes, R; Wilhem, L J; Park, B et al. (2016) MAOA expression predicts vulnerability for alcohol use. Mol Psychiatry 21:472-9
Karkhanis, Anushree N; Rose, Jamie H; Weiner, Jeffrey L et al. (2016) Early-Life Social Isolation Stress Increases Kappa Opioid Receptor Responsiveness and Downregulates the Dopamine System. Neuropsychopharmacology 41:2263-74
Yorgason, Jordan T; Calipari, Erin S; Ferris, Mark J et al. (2016) Social isolation rearing increases dopamine uptake and psychostimulant potency in the striatum. Neuropharmacology 101:471-9

Showing the most recent 10 out of 48 publications