Combined exposure to tobacco smoke and ethanol during adolescence leads to short- and long-term modulation of anxiety-like behavior.
BACKGROUND: Tobacco smoking is associated with alcohol drinking and consumption of both drugs typically begins during adolescence. Since anxiety is considered a relevant factor for both smoking and drinking due to its motivating force for a continued consumption, anxiety alterations shared by these two drugs could explain their co-use and co-abuse. METHODS: Here, we investigated the short- and long-term effects of adolescent tobacco smoke and/or ethanol exposure on anxiety levels. From postnatal day 30-45, Swiss mice were exposed to tobacco smoke (SMK--whole body exposure, 8 h/day) and/or ethanol (ETOH--25% solution, 2g/kg i.p. injected every other day) as follows: (1) SMK+ETOH exposure; (2) SMK exposure; (3) ETOH exposure; (4) Control. Anxiety levels were assessed with the elevated plus maze and open field tests. RESULTS: By the end of exposure, SMK female mice presented an anxiolytic response in the elevated plus maze and this response was intensified by co-exposure to ethanol. A short-term deprivation from SMK elicited an anxiogenic state in females in this maze. Although neither smoke nor ethanol effects persisted one month post-exposure, SMK+ETOH male and female mice exhibited an anxiogenic response in the open field. CONCLUSION: Adolescent female mice are more susceptible to the anxiolytic effects of SMK. The stronger effect in SMK+ETOH group suggests that, in females, the combined exposure leads to lower anxiety levels. Anxiety levels do not seem to be relevant during a short-term SMK+ETOH deprivation, however, increased anxiety during long-term smoking and drinking deprivation demonstrate late-emergent effects both in males and females.
Abreu-Villaça, Y; Cavina, CC; Ribeiro-Carvalho, A; Correa-Santos, M; Naiff, VF; Filgueiras, CC; Manhães, AC
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