Honors Program

University Honors

Date of Award


Thesis Professor(s)

Allan D. Forsman

Thesis Professor Department

Health Sciences

Thesis Reader(s)

Allan D. Forsman, Jonathan M. Peterson


As a result of alcohol consumption being highly prevalent in today’s society, research has been done to investigate the effects of alcohol on the body’s physiological systems. Research has indicated that heavy alcohol consumption is detrimental to the normal structure and function of some organs, especially the liver. However, little research has focused on the effects of chronic alcohol consumption on the female reproductive system. To investigate these effects, the uterine tissues of mice fed an ethanol diet (the NIAAA model also known as the Lieber-DeCarli diet) and mice fed a control diet were compared. The NIAAA model was chosen for this research because it simulates the drinking pattern that is known to cause liver disease in alcoholic hepatitis patients. This is achieved by incorporating both chronic and binge drinking patterns of alcohol consumption. In this study, the mucin layer that lines the endometrial surface of the uterus was analyzed in mice separated into ethanol and control fed groups. The ethanol fed mice were put on the Lieber-DeCarli 5% (v/v) ethanol diet ad libitum for 10-days followed by a single high dose of ethanol (5g/kg) on the 11th day. The control fed mice were placed on an ethanol free isocaloric diet (supplemented with maltose dextrin to match the calories of ethanol). After the 11th day, the mice were sacrificed, and uterine tissues were harvested. The tissues were then embedded in paraffin, sectioned, stained via the Hematoxylin and Eosin (H&E) technique, and examined under a microscope. The thickness of the uterine mucin layer was then measured for each animal and the average thicknesses were calculated. A one-way ANOVA test was employed to compare the mucin thickness between the two groups of animals. The test revealed no statistically significant difference between the thicknesses of the uterine mucin layer in the control and ethanol fed animals (P-value: 0.774).


East Tennessee State University

Document Type

Honors Thesis - Withheld

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