The Effect of Colony Versus Isolated Housing on the Self Administration of Alcohol and Risk-taking Behavior in an Alcohol-preferring Rat Model



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Alcohol is a psychoactive substance and may be the first recreational chemical produced by humans (Doweiko & Evans, 2019, p.45). Alcohol, when consumed chronically throughout the lifespan, has been shown to be damaging to the brain and internal organs (Novier et al., 2015; National Cancer Institute, 2020). Stress has been shown to be a major obstacle for alcohol rehabilitation and increases the risk of alcohol relapse (Pang et al., 2019). One form of stress commonly experienced by those affected by alcohol use disorder is social isolation, which has been shown to increase alcohol consumption in previous research using rodent models (Johnson et al., 2015; Lopez et al., 2011). This study evaluated the effectiveness of social enrichment in decreasing the average consumption of ethanol in alcohol-preferring female rats and how it can mediate risk-taking behavior.