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Preview: Alcohol and Alcoholism - Advance Access

Alcohol and Alcoholism Advance Access

Published: Fri, 23 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Last Build Date: Fri, 23 Feb 2018 00:50:43 GMT


Chinese Women’s Drinking Patterns Before and After the Hong Kong Alcohol Policy Changes

Fri, 23 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

To examine the patterns of alcohol consumption in Hong Kong Chinese women before and after a period of major alcohol policy amendments.
Short summary
This study compared alcohol consumption patterns in Hong Kong Chinese women before and after a period of major alcohol policy amendments and found increased drinking among certain subgroups, particularly middle-aged women. These increases are likely due to personal factors (e.g. changing perceptions) as well as environmental influences (e.g. greater marketing).
Cross-sectional telephone surveys were conducted on adult Chinese women prior to the 2007–2008 beer and wine tax eliminations in 2006 (n = 4946) and in 2011 (n = 2439).
Over the study period, only women in the 36–45 year age stratum reported significant increases in all three drinking patterns: past-year drinking (38.1–45.2%), past-month binge drinking (2.3–5.2%) and weekly drinking (4.0–7.3%) (P < 0.05); middle-aged women, unemployed or retired women and those ascribing to alcohol’s health benefits emerged as new binge drinking risk groups. In 2011, 3.5% of all drinking-aged women (8.8% of past-year drinkers, 20.7% of binge drinkers and 23.1% of weekly drinkers) reported an increased drinking frequency after the tax policy changes. The main contexts of increased drinking were social events and with restaurant meals; moreover, beliefs of alcohol’s health benefits were common to all contexts of increased drinking. Of women who increased their drinking frequency, the largest proportion attributed it to peer effects/social environment conducive to drinking, and brand marketing/advertising influences.
Increased drinking among certain subgroups of Hong Kong Chinese women may be due to combined influences of: increased societal acceptance of social drinking, aggressive marketing promotions and personal beliefs in the health benefits of drinking that have recently emerged in the region. Hence, multi-prong strategies are required to combat potential drinking harms in these women.

PNPLA3 Association with Alcoholic Liver Disease in a Cohort of Heavy Drinkers

Wed, 21 Feb 2018 00:00:00 GMT

Prior studies have established variation at the PNPLA3gene to be associated with a risk of developing alcoholic liver disease (ALD). We attempt to replicate this finding and other potential genetic variations previously associated with ALD utilizing a case-control design in a cohort of subjects with alcohol use disorders.
Short summary
This case-control study performed in a US clinical sample of heavy drinkers, replicates the previously reported association between ALD and rs738409 polymorphism in the PNPLA3gene in heavy drinkers. This association persisted after accounting for the subject’s diabetes status.
Patients of European ancestry with a history of ALD were identified (n = 169). Controls consisted of patients without ALD who were from the same cohorts and were ≥ 30 years of age, had lifetime total years drinking ≥20 and lifetime maximum drinks per day ≥12 (n = 259). Patients were genotyped for 40 candidate single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) selected for the purpose of testing their association with ALD. The association of each SNP with ALD was tested using a logistic regression model, assuming log-additive allele effects. Bonferroni correction was applied and multivariable logistic regression models were used to account for relevant covariates.
Age, sex, and body mass index (BMI) distributions were similar between cases and controls. Diabetes was more prevalent in the ALD cases. Three SNPs were associated with ALD at the nominal significance level (rs738409 in PNPLA3, P = 0.00029; rs3741559 in AQP2, P = 0.0185; rs4290029 in NVL, P = 0.0192); only PNPLA3rs738409 SNP was significant at the Bonferroni-corrected P-value threshold of 0.00125. Association results remained significant after adjustment for diabetes status.
Our case-control study confirmed that PNPLA3 rs738409 SNP is associated with ALD. This is an important replication in a US clinical sample with control subjects who had long histories of alcohol consumption.