Gaia Rocchitta,Serra P A
Sassari University, Italy
Scientific Tracks Abstracts: J Neurosci Neuropharm
Alcohol has been a continuous presence in the evolution of mankind and indeed, nowadays, represents the most widespread psychotropic agent in Western societies. As many substances of abuse, ethanol activates the mesolimbic pathway, so alcohol addiction has become one of the most important health issues. Given these implications, it has become of primary importance the real-time monitoring of ethanol toxicokinetics and its effects in definite brain regions. Recently, implantable amperometric biosensors have offered a valid alternative to microdialysis for monitoring brain metabolites. In this study, we have presented the characterization of an implantable amperometric biosensor for the real-time measurement of brain ethanol by improving a prior implantable design and integrating it in a biotelemetric device, to consent freely movements to the animals. The biosensor was then implanted in the shell of the nucleus accumbens by stereotaxic procedures in rats already conditioned to carry ethanol selfadministration. After the surgery, we waited for the animalā??s recovery with water and food ad libitum. The night before the experiments, the animals were left without water for 12 hours. The following day the biosensor was polarized and amperometric signal from ethanol was monitored and recorded up to its stabilization. At this stage, the animals had at their disposal, for 30 minutes, a solution containing 10% of ethanol. In this period, we were able to detect a significant increase of the current derived from ethanol when the animal swallowed the ethanol solution.
Gaia Rocchitta has completed her PhD in Neuroscience from School of Medicine of Sassari University (Italy) in 2004 and her Post-doctoral studies from School of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, University College, Dublin (Ireland) in 2006. She is currently a tenured Researcher and Lecturer in Pharmacology and Nutraceutical at School of Medicine of Sassari University (Italy). She has published more than 50 papers in peer-reviewed journals.