Howard C Becker

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BACKGROUND The development of dependence may have significant motivational consequences regarding continued use and abuse of ethanol. We have developed a mouse model of ethanol dependence and repeated withdrawals that demonstrates sensitization of seizures and other symptoms of withdrawal. It is unclear whether such experience influences ethanol drinking(More)
Prior experience with ethanol (EtOH) withdrawal may sensitize an individual to subsequent withdrawal episodes. It has been hypothesized that the progressive intensification of the EtOH withdrawal syndrome following repeated episodes of EtOH intoxication and withdrawal may represent the manifestations of a "kindling" mechanism. The purpose of this study was(More)
In the present study, we used a mouse model of chronic intermittent ethanol (CIE) exposure to examine how CIE alters the plasticity of the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). In acute slices obtained either immediately or 1-week after the last episode of alcohol exposure, voltage-clamp recording of excitatory post-synaptic currents (EPSCs) in mPFC layer V(More)
We previously demonstrated that chronic ethanol exposure and withdrawal experience significantly increased subsequent voluntary ethanol intake in C57BL/6J mice. This study was conducted to examine chronic ethanol conditions that optimize this enhanced ethanol-drinking behavior. The purpose of this study was to examine whether the pattern and/or number of(More)
The role of withdrawal-related phenomena in the development and maintenance of alcohol addiction remains under debate. A 'self-medication' framework postulates that emotional changes are induced by a history of alcohol use, persist into abstinence, and are a major factor in maintaining alcoholism. This view initially focused on negative emotional states(More)
BACKGROUND Excessive alcohol drinking continues to be an important health problem. Recent studies from our laboratory and others have demonstrated that animal models of ethanol dependence and relapse can contribute to understanding factors that contribute to excessive drinking. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that the amount and duration of ethanol(More)
One factor that has been shown to influence the severity of an ethanol withdrawal syndrome is a history of prior experience with episodes of ethanol withdrawal. It has been hypothesized that the progressive intensification of withdrawal symptoms following repeated bouts of ethanol intoxication and withdrawal may represent the manifestations of a(More)
This article represents the proceedings of a symposium at the 2003 annual meeting of the Research Society on Alcoholism in Fort Lauderdale, FL, organized by Theodora Duka and chaired by Dai Stephens. The purpose of the symposium was to examine the effects of multiple experiences of withdrawal from alcohol in animals made dependent on alcohol and in humans(More)
Repeated ethanol withdrawal experience has been shown to result in an exacerbation of future withdrawal episodes. This sensitization of the withdrawal response has been hypothesized to represent a "kindling" phenomenon. The present study was designed to examine whether a systematic increase in the number of previous ethanol withdrawal experiences increases(More)
Experience with stress situations during early development can have long-lasting effects on stress- and anxiety-related behaviors. Importantly, this can also favor drug self-administration. These studies examined the effects of chronic social isolation and/or variable stress experiences during early development on subsequent voluntary ethanol intake in(More)