Quantitative analysis of the nanoscale intra-nuclear structural alterations in hippocampal cells in chronic alcoholism via transmission electron microscopy study
Chronic alcoholism is known to alter morphology of hippocampal, an important region of cognitive function in the brain. We performed quantification of nanoscale structural alterations in nuclei of hippocampal neuron cells due to chronic alcoholism, in mice model. Transmission electron microscopy images of the neuron cells were obtained and the degrees of structural alteration, in terms of mass density fluctuations, were determined using the recently developed light localization analysis technique. The results, obtained at the length scales ranging from 33 to 195 nm, show that the 4-week alcohol fed mice have higher degree of structural alteration in comparison to the control mice. The degree of structural alterations starts becoming significantly distinguishable around 100 nm sample length, which is the typical length scale of the building blocks of cells, such as DNA, RNA, etc. Different degrees of structural alterations at such length scales suggest possible structural rearrangement of chromatin inside the nuclei.