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For full versions of posted research articles readers are encouraged to email requests for "electronic reprints" (text file, PDF files, FAX copies) to the corresponding or lead author, who is highlighted in the posting.


Friday, February 27, 2009

Interaction between dopamine D2 receptor genotype and parental rule-setting in adolescent alcohol use: evidence for a gene-parenting interaction
Molecular Psychiatry advance online publication 24 February 2009

Association studies investigating the link between the dopamine D2 receptor gene (DRD2) and alcohol (mis)use have shown inconsistent results. This may be due to lack of attention for environmental factors. High levels of parental rule-setting are associated with lower levels of adolescent alcohol use and delay of initiation of drinking.
We tested whether DRD2 TaqI A (rs1800497) genotype interacts with alcohol-specific parenting practices in predicting the uptake of regular adolescent alcohol use.
Parental rule-setting was directly and inversely related to adolescent alcohol use over time.

For DRD2 genotype no significant main effect was found. DRD2 genotype interacted with parental rule-setting on adolescent alcohol use over time: adolescents, with parents highly permissive toward alcohol consumption and carrying a genotype with the DRD2 A1 (rs1800497T) allele, used significantly more alcohol over time than adolescents without these characteristics.
The DRD2 genotype may pose an increased risk for alcohol use and abuse, depending on the presence of environmental risk factors, such as alcohol-specific parenting.

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Finland's u-turn on alcohol tax

Health ministers are describing drinking as the new smoking amid rising concern about the price of alcohol in the UK.

The Scottish government has suggested a range of radical measures, including a minimum price per unit of alcohol.

After a public consultation they are due to respond with more detailed proposals for legislation later this month.

The idea of minimum pricing is supported by medical organisations and charities, but opposed by retailers who say moderate drinkers would be unfairly penalised.

The Scottish government says the connection between price and consumption is backed by international evidence, including the recent experience of Finland.

Tax cut
In 2004 tax on alcohol in Finland was dramatically reduced, leading to price reductions of up to a third, depending on the type of alcohol.

Health campaigners say alcohol related harm visibly increased within the space of two or three years.
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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Moderate Alcohol Intake and Cancer Incidence in Women
Journal of the National Cancer Institute Advance Access published online on February 24, 2009

With the exception of breast cancer, little is known about the effect of moderate intakes of alcohol, or of particular types of alcohol, on cancer risk in women.

A quarter of the cohort reported drinking no alcohol; 98% of drinkers consumed fewer than 21 drinks per week, with drinkers consuming an average of 10 g alcohol (1 drink) per day. During an average 7.2 years of follow-up per woman 68 775 invasive cancers occurred. Increasing alcohol consumption was associated with increased risks of cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx (increase per 10 g/d = 29%, 95% CI = 14% to 45%, Ptrend < .001), esophagus (22%, 95% CI = 8% to 38%, Ptrend = .002), larynx (44%, 95% CI = 10% to 88%, Ptrend = .008), rectum (10%, 95% CI = 2% to 18%, Ptrend = .02), liver (24%, 95% CI = 2% to 51%, Ptrend = .03), breast (12%, 95% CI = 9% to 14%, Ptrend < .001), and total cancer (6%, 95% CI = 4% to 7%, Ptrend < .001). The trends were similar in women who drank wine exclusively and other consumers of alcohol. For cancers of the upper aerodigestive tract, the alcohol-associated risk was confined to current smokers, with little or no effect of alcohol among never and past smokers (Pheterogeneity < .001). Increasing levels of alcohol consumption were associated with a decreased risk of thyroid cancer (Ptrend = .005), non–Hodgkin lymphoma (Ptrend = .001), and renal cell carcinoma (Ptrend = .03).

Low to moderate alcohol consumption in women increases the risk of certain cancers. For every additional drink regularly consumed per day, the increase in incidence up to age 75 years per 1000 for women in developed countries is estimated to be about 11 for breast cancer, 1 for cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx, 1 for cancer of the rectum, and 0.7 each for cancers of the esophagus, larynx and liver, giving a total excess of about 15 cancers per 1000 women up to age 75.

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