Pharmacologic determinants of tobacco dependence

Leslie M. Schuh, Kory J. Schuh, Jack E. Henningfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Nicotine is one of the most widely abused psychoactive drugs and far more people trying it progress to regular use than those trying heroin, cocaine, or alcohol. Since the early 20th century, it has been understood that tobacco use is driven largely by nicotine's pharmacological actions. Nicotine produces reinforcing effects, tolerance and physical dependence, and pharmacological effects that smokers enjoy, such as modulation of mood, appetite, and task performance. Pharmacokinetic properties of tobacco-based nicotine products optimize abuse potential. Cigarette smoke inhalation delivers high nicotine concentrations to the brain and other organs within 10 s of inhalation. Nicotine's acute effects dissipate in a few minutes, encouraging the smoker to smoke frequently throughout the day to maintain its pleasurable effects and prevent withdrawal symptoms. Nicotine and other constituents of smoke also provide sensory stimuli which, through repeated pairings, become conditioned reinforcers and further strengthen tobacco self- administration, creating an extremely persistant behavior. Nicotine replacement medications provide relief of cigarette withdrawal symptoms and are effective aids in smoking cessation; however, sustaining long-term abstinence can still be very difficult.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)335-341
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Therapeutics
Volume3
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1996

Fingerprint

Tobacco Use Disorder
Nicotine
Smoke
Substance Withdrawal Syndrome
Tobacco Products
Inhalation
Tobacco
Pharmacology
Self Administration
Psychotropic Drugs
Heroin
Task Performance and Analysis
Tobacco Use
Appetite
Smoking Cessation
Cocaine
Pharmacokinetics
Alcohols
Brain

Keywords

  • dependence
  • Nicotine
  • performance
  • ther apy
  • tobacco
  • tolerance
  • withdrawal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology

Cite this

Schuh, L. M., Schuh, K. J., & Henningfield, J. E. (1996). Pharmacologic determinants of tobacco dependence. American Journal of Therapeutics, 3(5), 335-341.

Pharmacologic determinants of tobacco dependence. / Schuh, Leslie M.; Schuh, Kory J.; Henningfield, Jack E.

In: American Journal of Therapeutics, Vol. 3, No. 5, 05.1996, p. 335-341.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Schuh, LM, Schuh, KJ & Henningfield, JE 1996, 'Pharmacologic determinants of tobacco dependence', American Journal of Therapeutics, vol. 3, no. 5, pp. 335-341.
Schuh LM, Schuh KJ, Henningfield JE. Pharmacologic determinants of tobacco dependence. American Journal of Therapeutics. 1996 May;3(5):335-341.
Schuh, Leslie M. ; Schuh, Kory J. ; Henningfield, Jack E. / Pharmacologic determinants of tobacco dependence. In: American Journal of Therapeutics. 1996 ; Vol. 3, No. 5. pp. 335-341.
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