Brief Report| Volume 62, ISSUE 6, P694-697, September 15, 2007

Family History of Alcoholism Influences Naltrexone-Induced Reduction in Alcohol Drinking


      The purpose of this study was to examine the interactive effects of family history of alcoholism (FH+, FH−) and naltrexone dose (0, 50, 100 mg/day) on alcohol drinking.


      Ninety-two, non–treatment-seeking alcohol-dependent participants received naltrexone daily for 6 days. On the 6th day, they participated in a laboratory paradigm involving exposure to a priming dose of alcohol followed by a 2-hour drinking period in which they made choices between consuming alcoholic drinks and receiving money.


      Total number of drinks consumed during the drinking period was significantly decreased by the 100-mg dose of naltrexone in FH+ drinkers. Secondary analyses in male drinkers (n = 70) indicated that 100 mg of naltrexone significantly decreased drinking in FH+ participants and increased drinking in FH− drinkers.


      These results suggest that family history of alcoholism might be a significant clinical predictor of response to naltrexone and that FH+ men are more likely to benefit from naltrexone therapy for alcohol drinking.

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