Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Medical Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Mark Prendergast


Ethanol consumption during pregnancy is rising in the U.S., including the rate of binge drinking. It is reported around 1 in 27 women engage in binge drinking activities while pregnant. The third trimester is a sensitive period of neuronal growth in which ethanol induced neurotoxicity can cause many harmful effects including Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. It has been shown that ethanol decreases the activity of AMPK through increasing lipid peroxidation, both of which are correlated to neurotoxicity. AICAR is a synthetic analog of AMP which significantly increases AMPK activity and may have beneficial effects in an organotypic hippocampal model of third trimester binge drinking. The purpose of this study is to evaluate if pharmacologically increasing the activity of AMPK could reduce the degree of ethanol induced neurotoxicity to provide a potential therapeutic target for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)