Author(s): Gallaher EJ, Parsons LM, Goldstein DB
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Abstract We have developed a precise quantal method for assessing the sensitivity to ethanol in the mouse. Mice placed on a clamped stationary horizontal dowel are scored ataxic or not ataxic depending on whether they are able to remain on the dowel during a 30-s observation period. A threshold blood ethanol concentration is determined by assaying tail blood drawn immediately upon recovery from ethanol-induced ataxia. This threshold is quite reproducible within a population of Swiss-Webster mice (coefficient of variation 9\%). The precision of this method allowed us to follow the onset of rapid tolerance during a series of sequential IP ethanol doses. Tolerance persisted overnight in the absence of ethanol, and was found not to increase further with additional ethanol exposure on 2 subsequent days. The observed tolerance was shown not to be due to circadian changes in ethanol sensitivity or repeated practice on the task, indicating a true tissue tolerance.
This article was published in Psychopharmacology (Berl)
and referenced in Journal of Alcoholism & Drug Dependence