Can’t hold drink? Blame your genes

By: | Published: November 18, 2015 2:43 PM

New study's DNA-boozy hijinks link can be the perfect excuse for those embarrassing moments at the parties.

A new study’s DNA-boozy hijinks link can be the perfect excuse for those embarrassing moments at the parties.

University of Helsinki researchers have found that some people are genetically predisposed to reckless or impulsive behaviour when under the influence of alcohol.

A genetic mutation has been linked with impulsivity – especially when drunk – in the study of a gene responsible for a receptor protein in the brain needed by the neurotransmitter serotonin 2b, they said.

The discovery could account for why some people cannot “hold their drink” and are prone to erratic behaviour even after consuming a relatively small quantity of alcohol, the researchers said.

The results also indicate that persons with this mutation are more impulsive by nature even when sober, and they are more likely to struggle with self-control or mood disorders, said psychiatrist Roope Tikkanen.

The study could lead to drugs or treatments for severe impulsive behaviour or genetic tests that could warn carriers about the dangers of drinking alcohol, the researchers said.

The study is published in the journal Translational Psychiatry.

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