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Animal models of nicotine exposure: relevance to second-hand smoking, electronic cigarette use, and compulsive smoking.


Much evidence indicates that individuals use tobacco primarily to experience the psychopharmacological properties of nicotine and that a large proportion of smokers eventually become dependent on nicotine. In humans, nicotine acutely produces positive reinforcing effects, including mild euphoria, whereas a nicotine abstinence syndrome with both somatic and affective components is observed after chronic nicotine exposure. Animal models of nicotine self-administration and chronic exposure to nicotine have been critical in unveiling the neurobiological substrates that mediate the acute reinforcing effects of nicotine and emergence of a withdrawal syndrome during abstinence. However, important aspects of the transition from nicotine abuse to nicotine dependence, such as the emergence of increased motivation and compulsive nicotine intake following repeated exposure to the drug, have only recently begun to be modeled in animals. Thus, the neurobiological mechanisms that are involved in these important aspects of nicotine addiction remain largely unknown. In this review, we describe the different animal models available to date and discuss recent advances in animal models of nicotine exposure and nicotine dependence. This review demonstrates that novel animal models of nicotine vapor exposure and escalation of nicotine intake provide a unique opportunity to investigate the neurobiological effects of second-hand nicotine exposure, electronic cigarette use, and the mechanisms that underlie the transition from nicotine use to compulsive nicotine intake.

Veröffentlicht in: Frontiers in psychiatry / Frontiers Research Foundation

Veröffentlicht im: Jan 1970

Survey of smokers' reasons for not switching to safer sources of nicotine and their willingness to do so in the future.


Despite the well-known risks of smoking, policy, social pressure, and accessible cessation programs, tens of millions of North American adults continue smoking rather than quitting or switching to less harmful non-combustion nicotine products. We surveyed people smoking in public in Edmonton, Canada (n = 242, year = 2007) to investigate smokers' reasons for resisting switching to low-risk nicotine sources. 43% had used low-risk products (mostly pharmaceutical nicotine). 75% indicated willingness to consider switching to low-risk products. Smokers cited similar reasons for not switching to smokeless tobacco and pharmaceutical nicotine, largely based on misinformation. Accurate risk information may lead many to try low-risk nicotine products.

Veröffentlicht in: Harm reduction journal

Veröffentlicht im: Jan 1970

Acute nicotinic blockade produces cognitive impairment in normal humans.


Single oral doses of the central and peripheral nicotinic antagonist mecamylamine were administered to healthy young normal males in doses of 5, 10, and 20 mg in a placebo-controlled, double-blind study. The 20 mg dose caused a significant increase in errors in the learning condition of the Repeated Acquisition task, producing a slower acquisition curve. The lower doses produced less errors, but more than in the placebo condition. There was no effect of drug on the performance component (retrieval of previously learned information). On the recognition memory task, dose-related increases in false-alarms during the delay period were seen, with little effect on misses or hits. Reaction time measures suggested a dose-related slowing of RT on several tasks. Behavioral effects were minimal and physiologic measures were consistent with dose-related ganglionic blockade. We interpret these results to indicate that acute blockade of nicotinic receptor function can produce measurable and significant cognitive impairment, even in non-smoking normals.

Veröffentlicht in: Psychopharmacology

Veröffentlicht im: Jan 1970

Effects of cigarette smoking on performance in a simulated driving task.


A double-blind study was conducted to investigate the psychomotor effects of cigarette smoking on a 1-hour computer-based simulation of driving comprising continuous tracking and brake reaction time tasks. Twelve minimally abstinent smoker subjects were asked to operate the simulator on four occasions while smoking single cigarettes yielding varying levels of nicotine (< 0.1, 0.6, 1.0 or 2.1 mg) but similar levels (8-10 mg) of tar. Data were transformed with regard to baseline scores to counter day-to-day differences in performance and showed brake reaction times to be improved after all active treatments (p < 0.01) but tracking accuracy to be enhanced after the two cigarettes of middle strength alone (p < 0.05). These results suggest that, among smokers cigarette smoking may improve driving performance and that there may exist an optimal nicotine dose for the enhancement of cognitive and psychomotor function.

Veröffentlicht in: Neuropsychobiology

Veröffentlicht im: Jan 1970

Experimental exposure to propylene glycol mist in aviation emergency training: acute ocular and respiratory effects.


Propylene glycol (PG) (1-2 propanediol; CAS No 57-55-6) is a low toxicity compound widely used as a food additive, in pharmaceutical preparations, in cosmetics, and in the workplace-for example, water based paints, de-icing fluids, and cooling liquids. Exposure to PG mist may occur from smoke generators in discotheques, theatres, and aviation emergency training. Propylene glycol may cause contact allergy, but there is sparse information on health effects from occupational exposure to PG.

Veröffentlicht in: Occupational and environmental medicine

Veröffentlicht im: Sep 2001