A pharmacokinetic crossover study to compare the absorption characteristics of three transdermal nicotine patches

Reginald V. Fant, Jack E. Henningfield, Saul Shiffman, Kenneth R. Strahs, Donald P. Reitberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations


We compared the pharmacokinetic profiles of the highest marketed doses of three different patch systems using a crossover study design. Specifically, each of the 25 subjects was assigned to receive the Pharmacia-Upjohn (McNeil) 15-mg, 16-h patch, the Novartis 21-mg, 24-h patch, and the Alza (SmithKline Beecham) 21-mg, 24-h patch. Subjects used each patch for 3 consecutive days, applying a new patch each morning. Plasma nicotine concentrations were measured 15 times during the first 24-h period and at 48, 48.5, 49.5, and 51 h following initial patch application. Measures of total nicotine absorbed (AUC), maximum plasma nicotine concentration (Cmax) and minimum plasma nicotine concentration (Cmin), were higher for the 21-mg, 24-h patches than for the 15-mg, 16-h patch during both the first day of dosing and during the modeled steady-state period (48-72 h after initial application). Within the 21-mg, 24-h patch systems, the Alza patch produced significantly higher AUC and Cmax values during acute dosing and during steady state, but there was no difference between Cmin values. The time to reach Cmax (Tmax) was fastest for the Alza patch system; the Pharmacia-Upjohn patch produced a faster Tmax than the Novartis patch. These results indicate that there are significant differences between the pharmacokinetics of the currently marketed patch systems, which may be important for effective relief of withdrawal symptoms and cigarette craving.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)479-482
Number of pages4
JournalPharmacology Biochemistry and Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2000


  • Bioavailability
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Kinetics
  • Nicotine
  • Smoking cessation
  • Transdermal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Behavioral Neuroscience
  • Pharmacology


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