Naloxone does not affect cigarette smoking

R. Nemeth-Coslett, Roland R. Griffiths

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In order to provide information about the hypothesis that endogenous opioids mediate the reinforcing properties of cigarette smoking, the present study examined the effects of naloxone, an opioid antagonist, on cigarette smoking in seven normal volunteers. The study used experimental procedures that had previously been shown sensitive for detecting the effects of other drugs, (including a nicotine antagonist) on smoking. Isolated subjects smoked their regular brand of cigarettes freely in a naturalistic laboratory environment while watching television or reading. Sixty minutes before each 2 h smoking session subjects received an IM injection of naloxone HCl (0.0625, 0.25, 1.0, or 4.0 mg/kg) or placebo. Each subject received each treatment three times in a mixed order across days. Naloxone did not significantly affect any measure of cigarette smoking including number of cigarettes, number of puffs, or expired air carbon monoxide level. Naloxone did, however, produce significant dose-related increases in subject ratings of yawning, stretching, and relaxation. The results of the present study provide no support for the endogenous opioid theory of smoking reinforcement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-264
Number of pages4
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1 1986


  • Cigarette smoking
  • Drug self-administration
  • Endorphins
  • Humans
  • Naloxone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology

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