Gene variants could explain inability to get drunk

Alcohol use and misuse account for 3.3 million deaths every year, or 6 percent of all deaths worldwide. The harmful effects of alcohol misuse are far reaching and range from individual health risks, morbidity, and mortality to consequences for family, friends, and the larger society.

Scientists for the the journal, ‘Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research, vol 34’, have discovered that 10% of people of African descent have a variant of a particular gene (ADH1B*3) that makes them sleepy faster than usual while drinking alcohol. The discovery may lead to further research in the field of addiction prevention. It also gives scientific backing to the long standing urban ‘myth’ that some cultures are genetically more vunerable to the effects of alcohol than others.

Over the past several decades, many studies have focused on the causes and risk factors associated with alcoholism. While there is not an exact formula to depict a person’s drinking habits, data has shown that alcohol abuse is influenced by a variety of factors. However, alcoholism is a disease that does not discriminate and can impact anyone – regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, body type or personal beliefs.

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