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astrocytes in hippocampus

This is Your Brain on Binges

Only a few sessions of binge drinking during adolescence can knock out neurons (shown in blue arch) in the hippocampus, the brain’s memory core. New research in mice has also shown that teen binges can send astrocytes (shown in green) awry later in adulthood, potentially impairing the brain’s ability to form new synapses and heal itself from injury. In this split image, a normal mouse brain appears at left. On the right, a brain with stressed astrocytes after binges that would be the equivalent of a 0.15 blood alcohol level in humans. Credit: Mary-Louise Risher, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences.