The alcohol-preferring AA rats have higher concentration of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) in the brain than the alcohol-avoiding ANA rats. In the present study, the 5-HT1, 5-HT2, and 5-HT3 receptors were studied with [3H]5-HT, [3H]ketanserin, and [3H]LY278584, respectively, in membrane homogenates from different brain regions of both rat lines using in vitro binding assays. No differences in the 5-HT1 and 5-HT2 receptor binding in the brainstem, hippocampus, frontal cortex, and hypothalamus or in the 5-HT3 receptor binding in the nucleus accumbens, amygdala, hippocampus, and frontal cortex were observed between the ethanol-naive animals of the rat lines. In rats given the opportunity to voluntarily consume alcohol, there was a tendency to increase 5-HT1 binding in the ANA rats, which tendency was, however, also found in their ethanol-naive controls subjected to the same handling and behavioral tests as the ethanol-experienced animals. The results do not, however, indicate that any genetic modifications of the 5-HT receptor-binding sites have occurred in the process of the selective breeding of AA and ANA rats for alcohol preference and avoidance, respectively.
- 5-HT receptors
- AA and ANA rats
- Selective breeding
- Voluntary alcohol consumption