Neuropeptide y (NPY) -induced reductions in alcohol intake during continuous access and following alcohol deprivation are not altered by restraint stress in alcohol-preferring (P) rats
Bertholomey, M.L.; Henderson, A.N.; Badia-Elder, N.E.; Stewart, R.B.
Pharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior 97(3): 453-461
Administration of neuropeptide Y (NPY) reduces anxiety-like behavior and alcohol intake in alcohol-preferring rats. The present experiment examined whether the effects of NPY on alcohol drinking are modulated by stress exposure during continuous access or following ethanol deprivation. Female P rats underwent 6 weeks of continuous access to 15% v/v ethanol and water prior to intracerebroventricular (ICV) cannula implantation. Deprived rats underwent two cycles of 5 days of ethanol exposure followed by 2 days of ethanol deprivation, while non-deprived rats had uninterrupted access to ethanol. Stressed rats in both ethanol access groups were exposed to restraint stress for 1h 4-6h after ethanol was removed from the deprived group in both cycles. ICV infusions of 5.0 μg NPY or aCSF were administered 48 h following the deprivation/stress procedure, after which ethanol was returned. Rats showed increased ethanol intake following ethanol deprivation compared to non-deprived controls. Food and water intake were increased, while ethanol intake was decreased, in rats infused with NPY. Stress did not increase ethanol intake or alter the response to NPY. Although no stress effects were found, the present experiment replicates previous findings regarding the effectiveness of NPY in reducing ethanol consumption. Future studies aimed at determining the extent to which stress may affect relapse to ethanol drinking and response to NPY would benefit from implementing different stress paradigms and varying the pattern of ethanol access.