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The val allele of the catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT) val(158)met polymorphism has been linked with nicotine dependence and with cognitive performance in healthy volunteers. We tested the hypothesis that the val allele is a risk factor for altered brain function and cognition during nicotine abstinence as compared with the normal smoking state. Chronic(More)
BACKGROUND Neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are a key target in medication development for various neuropsychiatric disorders, including nicotine dependence. Varenicline, a partial agonist at the alpha4beta2 nAChRs, is a new, efficacious medication for nicotine dependence. Its effects on the affective and cognitive dimensions of nicotine(More)
Two studies were conducted to examine the effect of filter vent blocking and smoking topography on carbon monoxide (CO) levels in smokers. In Study 1, 12 participants smoked two types of cigarettes (Marlboro Light and Carlton 100) under two types of blocking conditions (unblocked and half-blocked) while using a smoking topography device. Participants were(More)
As many as one-half of smokers relapse in the first week following a quit attempt, and subjective reports of cognitive deficits in early abstinence are associated with increased relapse risk. This study examined whether objective cognitive performance after 3 days of abstinence predicts smoking resumption in a 7-day simulated quit attempt. Sixty-seven(More)
RATIONALE Human behavioral pharmacology studies can examine how medications that target different neurotransmitter systems influence different aspects of smoking. Naltrexone and bupropion have been shown to alter ad lib smoking behavior; however, medication effects on nicotine reward in a cigarette choice paradigm have yet to be investigated. OBJECTIVE(More)
Varenicline promotes smoking cessation and reduces urges to smoke. However, the mechanisms associated with these effects and their time course are not well characterized. One mechanism may be extinction, but the duration of the current dosing protocol may not be sufficient. We examined the effect of extended pre-treatment with varenicline on smoking(More)
Cigarette smoking, like many addictive behaviors, has been shown to have a genetic component. The dopamine transporter (DAT) gene (SLC6A3) encodes a protein that regulates synaptic levels of dopamine in the brain and is a candidate gene for addictive behaviors. We have collected smoking information from a national probability sample of 3383 adult volunteers(More)
Public service announcements (PSAs) are non-commercial broadcast ads that are an important part of televised public health campaigns. "Message sensation value" (MSV), a measure of sensory intensity of audio, visual, and content features of an ad, is an important factor in PSA impact. Some communication theories propose that higher message sensation value(More)
BACKGROUND There is a disproportionately high smoking prevalence among individuals who are prone to depression. While depression has been conceptualized as a disorder of dysregulated positive affect and disrupted reward processing, little research has been conducted to determine the role of smoking in these processes among depression-prone smokers. (More)
RATIONALE Tobacco use and obesity lead to significant morbidity and mortality. OBJECTIVE This study was conducted to investigate the factors maintaining smoking behavior in lean and obese individuals by utilizing a mouse/human cross-validation model of nicotine reward. METHODS In humans, a cigarette choice paradigm was used to examine the relative(More)