1989-petrie.pdf: “Smoking and human information processing”, Rachel X. A. Petrie, Ian J. Deary (1989-11-01):
There is much evidence which indicates that smoking improves various aspects of human information processing (Wesnes 1987). The aim of the present study was to elucidate the stages of human information processing which are improved after cigarette smoking. Twelve regular smokers were tested on three cognitive tasks using a repeated measures design. Tasks used were: rapid visual information processing (RVIP), digit symbol substitution (DSST), and inspection time (IT). Performance parameters derived from these were intended to index different stages of the information processing sequence. Only those measures which involved a motor component were improved after smoking: response time on the RVIP task (p < 0.025) and DSST performance (p < 0.1). These findings suggest that central cholinergic pathways are involved in the late, response-related stages of the processing sequence.
1991-hughes-2.pdf: “Long-term Use of Nicotine vs Placebo Gum”, John R. Hughes, Steven W. Gust, Robert Keenan, James W. Fenwick, Kelli Skoog, Stephen T. Higgins (1991-10-01):
Medical patients (n = 315) who wished to quit smoking were randomly assigned in a double-blind manner to receive either nicotine or placebo gum. Subjects were advised to stop gum use by 4 months. Among abstinent smokers, 46% of those receiving nicotine gum and 17% of those receiving placebo gum used the gum beyond the recommended 4-month period. By 10 months after cessation 17% of quitters receiving nicotine gum and 6% receiving placebo gum were still using gum. Gradual reduction of nicotine gum did not result in withdrawal and cessation of nicotine gum did not increase the probability of relapse to smoking or weight gain. We conclude that use of nicotine gum is due, in part, to the effects of nicotine; however, long-term use is uncommon.
1992-robinson.pdf: “The role of nicotine in tobacco use”, John H. Robinson, Walter S. Pritchard (1992-09-01):
The 1988 US Surgeon General’s Report titled “Nicotine Addiction”, is cited frequently in the literature as having established the “fact” that nicotine derived from cigarette smoke is addictive in the same sense as “classic” addicting drugs such as heroin and cocaine. This manuscripts critically evaluates key research findings used in support of this claim and identifies short-comings in the data that seriously question the logic of labeling nicotine as “addictive”. In addition, the manuscript argues that the role of nicotine in tobacco use is not like the role of cocaine in coca leaf use as argued by the 1988 Surgeon General’s Report, but is, in fact, more like the role of caffeine in coffee drinking as concluded in the 1964 US Surgeon General’s Report.
1992-west.pdf: “Nicotine addiction: a re-analysis of the arguments”, Robert West (1992-09-01):
This paper evaluates the arguments put forward by Robinson and Pritchard (R&P, this volume) that the conclusions of the US Surgeon General (USDHHS 1988) that nicotine is addictive were ill founded. R&P state that nicotine does not cause intoxication, that many smokers do not exhibit compulsive use, that nicotine is not a euphoriant, that nicotine is a weak reinforcer in other species, that non-pharmacological aspects of smoking are important and that negative affect control accounts for more of the variance in questionnaire measures of smoking motives than does habit. This paper points out that intoxication and a euphoriant effect are not normally considered to be central to dependence potential, that no addictive drug results in compulsive use in all users in all situations, that animals do reliably self-administer nicotine, that evidence concerning the apparent importance of non-pharmacological components of smoking do not diminish the importance of pharmacological aspects and that “variance accounted for” of self-report measures of smoking motivation do not bear on the issue of the importance of those motives. The paper concludes with a summary of the essence of the argument that cigarettes are addictive and that nicotine is the primary focus of that addiction.
1994-pickworth.pdf: “Transdermal nicotine: reduction of smoking with minimal abuse liability”, Wallace B. Pickworth, Edward B. Bunker, Jack E. Henningfield (1994-01-01):
Cigarette consumption as well as the physiologic, performance and subjective effects of the nicotine patch were evaluated in ten subjects who smoked ad libitum while residing on a residential research ward for 30 days. Nicotine transdermal systems (“patches”) delivering a total of 0, 22 or 44 mg per 24h were applied daily at a constant dose during each 7-day condition; the order of dosing conditions was varied according to a randomized, double-blind, crossover design. Nicotine patches statistically-significantly but modestly reduced spontaneous smoking and statistically-significantly increased venous plasma nicotine levels. Self ratings of patch liking, satisfaction with cigarettes and the ability to identify the patch condition did not change as a function of the nicotine dose, indicating minimal abuse liability. There were no consistent changes in the puffing pattern measures; however, in all patch conditions, subjects with extensive histories of illicit drug use smoked cigarettes faster than subjects with histories of occasional drug use. Small changes in resting heart rate, pulse and blood pressure occurred when the nicotine patch was worn. Thus large changes in venous plasma nicotine levels engender only modest changes in ad libitum cigarette consumption, measures of abuse liability and cardiovascular effects. These findings are consistent with the notion that the addictive and toxic effects of nicotine are partially determined by the rate of drug administration.
1994-warburton.pdf: “Improvements in performance without nicotine withdrawal”, David M. Warburton, Cliff Arnall (1994-01-01):
Two tests were made of the withdrawal-relief explanation of the improvements in performance obtained with smoking. Study 1 examined the extent to which abstinence from smoking produced poorer performance in smokers in comparison with non-smokers. No evidence was obtained of differences in performance in smokers who were deprived of cigarettes for 10h and non-smokers. Study 2 tested smokers with a standard cigarette or sham smoking after one hour and 12h of deprivation. There was no difference in performance for the two deprivation intervals either in the sham smoking condition, or after smoking the lit cigarette. This study gave no evidence for withdrawal-relief being an explanation of the improvements in performance obtained with smoking.
1998-herzig.pdf: “Effects of cotinine on information processing in nonsmokers”, Karen E. Herzig, Enoch Callaway, R. Halliday, Hilary Naylor, Neal L. Benowitz (1998-01-01):
Cotinine, the major proximate metabolite of nicotine, is present in smokers in higher concentrations and for a longer time than nicotine, yet its effects on information processing have not previously been reported. We studied the cognitive effects of cotinine in non-smokers. Sixteen subjects were tested on three doses of cotinine (0.5, 1.0, and 1.5 mg cotinine base/
kg), and placebo, on a choice reaction time (RT) task and on a verbal recall task with short and long lists. Cotinine statistically-significantly impaired recall on the long list and displayed non-significant but generally consistent dose-related slowing of RT and N100 latency. The acute effects of cotinine were small, and probably do not account for the cognitive deficits observed in tobacco withdrawal, although the cognitive effects of chronic cotinine administration need to be investigated.
1998-mumenthaler.pdf: “Influence of nicotine on simulator flight performance in non-smokers”, M. S. Mumenthaler, Joy L. Taylor, Ruth O’Hara, Jerome A. Yesavage (1998-11-01):
In a placebo-controlled study, we investigated the influence of nicotine on late-day aviation performance in 15 non-smoking subjects. In a within-subjects design, subjects were tested on 2 days, each lasting 8 h and consisting of three 75-min simulator flights (late-afternoon practice, evening test, night test). Prior to each test, subjects received either nicotine polacrilex 2 mg or placebo gum. As expected, overall performance was statistically-significantly better after nicotine, compared to placebo (p < 0.01). Post-hoc analysis of individual flight tasks showed that nicotine improved scores on approach to landing, a task which appears to require sustained attention. We conclude that nicotine may improve late-day flight performance in non-smoking aviators. [Keywords: Nicotine, Cognition, Psychomotor performance, Task performance and analysis, Aerospace medicine, Attention, Workload, Chewing gum, Non-smoker]
1998-parkin.pdf: “The effects of cigarette smoking on overnight performance”, C. Parkin, D. B. Fairweather, Z. Shamsi, N. Stanley, I. Hindmarch (1998-03-01):
15 healthy smokers and 15 non-smokers were enrolled into this study investigating the effects of smoking on overnight performance. Subjects arrived at the test centre at 1930 hours and were assessed at baseline (2000 hours) and at 2200, 0000, 0200, 0400, 0600, and 0800 hours on a battery of tests (including Critical Flicker Fusion, CFF; Choice Reaction Time, CRT; Compensatory Tracking Task, CTT; Short Term Memory Task, STM; and the Line Analogue Rating Scale, LARS). Results showed that the performance of the smokers was more consistent with baseline measures than that of the non-smokers, which became more impaired throughout the night on a number of tasks [CFF (p < 0.005), Total Reaction Time (TRT, p < 0.05), CTT (p < 0.05) and the Reaction Time (RT) aspect of the CTT task (p < 0.0005)]. The Recognition Reaction Time (RRT) aspect of the CRT task showed that the performance of the non-smokers became more impaired from baseline (p < 0.005), while that of the smokers remained at baseline levels until 0400 hours, when it deteriorated to become comparable to that of the non-smoking controls. Subjective sedation ratings (LARS) resulted in comparable levels of impairment for both study groups (p < 0.00005). Findings from the STM task failed to reach statistical-significance. These data suggest that when performance is being measured overnight, smokers show little or no impairment, whilst the performance of non-smokers showed performance decrements.
2001-warburton.pdf: “Improved incidental memory with nicotine after semantic processing, but not after phonological processing”, David M. Warburton, Abigail Skinner, Christopher D. Martin (2001-01-01):
Rationale: A number of lines of evidence suggest that a nicotinic cholinergic system is mediating attentional processing. However, the evidence is less clear for a nicotinic system being involved in mnemonic processing.
Objectives: The present study investigated the effects of nicotine on memory using a depth of processing paradigm.
Methods: A double-blind design was used with participants (n = 40) smoking either a nicotine containing cigarette (n = 20) and a denicotinized cigarette (n = 20). After smoking, each set of these participants was further subdivided into two groups (n = 10 for each). One group were presented with a series of trials each beginning with the presentation of a “decision word” which they had to say whether it represented something which was living or non-living (semantic-orienting). The second group had to say whether the word had one syllable or two syllables (phonological or non-semantic orienting condition). This decision was followed by a word in coloured ink whose colour participants were required to name as quickly as possible. On completion of the whole task the participants were given an unexpected free recall test.
Results: The nicotine-containing cigarette reduced the latencies for decision-making and colour naming in comparison with the denicotinized cigarette. The free recall test showed that nicotine-containing cigarette increased the number of words remembered, but only for the semantic-orienting condition and not the non-semantic condition.
Conclusions: There is a nicotinic cholinergic system that mediates effortful processing. It can be deployed for attentional processing, including the associative processing required for memory encoding.
2003-klesges.pdf: “Use of Nicotine Replacement Therapy in Adolescent Smokers and Nonsmokers”, Lisa M. Klesges, Karen C. Johnson, Grant Somes, Susan Zbikowski, Leslie Robinson (2003-06-01):
Background: Assessing whether and how adolescents use nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) will be important given recent recommendations to make NRT more accessible by lowering its price, increasing its distribution, and advising health care professionals to suggest its use for smoking cessation.
Objectives: To report the prevalence, ease of access, and reasons for NRT use and describe inappropriate use in adolescent smokers and nonsmokers.
Design: Cross-sectional survey of 4078 high school students during the school term of 1998.
Setting: City schools in Memphis, Tenn.
Main Outcome Measures: Community-based self-reported prevalence of NRT use and characteristics of those using NRT.
Results: Approximately 5% of adolescents reported trying or using nicotine gum or patches. Females were less likely than males and African Americans were less likely than others to use NRT. For African American smokers, NRT use was highest at lower smoking levels, while other smokers showed the opposite pattern. Almost 40% of former smokers reported using NRT to try to quit smoking; however, 75% of current smokers endorsed using NRT for reasons other than trying to quit smoking. Other inappropriate use of NRT was reported; 18% of NRT users reported themselves as never smokers. More than 50% of students reported that it would be easy for them to get NRT.
Conclusions: Nicotine replacement therapy is used by adolescent smokers and nonsmokers, is easily accessible, and is used for reasons other than trying to quit smoking. Efforts are needed to discourage NRT use in nonsmoking youth and to encourage appropriate use of NRT in young smokers to maximize its potential for successful cessation.
2004-tucha.pdf: “Effects of nicotine chewing gum on a real-life motor task: a kinematic analysis of handwriting movements in smokers and non-smokers”, Oliver Tucha, Klaus W. Lange (2003-12-11):
Rationale: In laboratory tasks nicotine has consistently been shown to improve psychomotor performance.
Objectives: The aim of the present experiment was to assess the effects of nicotine on a skilled task of everyday life in smoking and non-smoking healthy adults.
Methods: Assessment of handwriting movements of 38 non-deprived smokers and 38 non-smokers was performed following the chewing of gum containing 0 mg, 2 mg or 4 mg of nicotine. A digitising tablet was used for the assessment of fine motor movements. Subjects were asked to perform a simple writing task. Movement time, velocity and acceleration of the handwriting movements were measured. Furthermore, every writing specimen was independently rated by two examiners regarding the quality of handwriting.
Results: Kinematic analysis of writing movements revealed that nicotine could produce absolute improvements in handwriting. Following nicotine administration, reduced movement times, increased velocities and more fluent handwriting movements were observed. These improvements were more striking in smokers than in non-smokers. No effects of nicotine were found with regard to the quality of handwriting.
Conclusion: The results suggest that nicotine can enhance psychomotor performance to a statistically-significant degree in a real-life motor task. [Keywords: nicotine, human, handwriting, movement analysis, kinematic analysis]
2007-anstey.pdf: “Smoking as a Risk Factor for Dementia and Cognitive Decline: A Meta-Analysis of Prospective Studies”, Kaarin J. Anstey, Chwee von Sanden, Agus Salim, Richard O'Kearney (2007-06-14):
The authors assessed the association of smoking with dementia and cognitive decline in a meta-analysis of 19 prospective studies with at least 12 months of follow-up. Studies included a total of 26,374 participants followed for dementia for 2–30 years and 17,023 participants followed up for 2–7 years to assess cognitive decline. Mean study age was 74 years. Current smokers at baseline, relative to never smokers, had risks of 1.79 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.43, 2.23) for incident Alzheimer’s disease, 1.78 (95% CI: 1.28, 2.47) for incident vascular dementia, and 1.27 (95% CI: 1.02, 1.60) for any dementia. Compared with those who never smoked, current smokers at baseline also showed greater yearly declines in Mini-Mental State Examination scores over the follow-up period (effect size (β) = −0.13, 95% CI: −0.18, −0.08). Compared with former smokers, current smokers at baseline showed an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease (relative risk = 1.70, 95% CI: 1.25, 2.31) and an increased decline in cognitive abilities (effect size (β) = −0.07, 95% CI: −0.11, −0.03), but the groups were not different regarding risk of vascular dementia or any dementia. The authors concluded that elderly smokers have increased risks of dementia and cognitive decline. [Keywords: Alzheimer disease, cognition, dementia, vascular, meta-analysis, smoking]
2009-froeliger.pdf: “Effects of nicotine on novelty detection and memory recognition performance: double-blind, placebo-controlled studies of smokers and nonsmokers”, Brett Froeliger, David G. Gilbert, F. Joseph McClernon (2009-06-02):
Rationale: Dependent smokers exhibit deficits in attentional and memory processes when smoking abstinent as compared to when satiated. While nicotine replacement therapy improves attention during abstinence, it is unclear whether this is due to the alleviation of withdrawal-related deficits or inherent beneficial effects of nicotine.
Objectives: The primary aim of these studies was to test whether nicotine exerts a beneficial effect on novelty detection and whether such effects occur in nonsmokers as well as habitual smokers.
Materials and methods: In 2 parallel, double-blind, placebo-controlled studies, 24 smokers (study 1) and 24 nonsmokers (study 2) were tested in two counterbalanced sessions: once while wearing a nicotine patch (smokers = 14 mg; nonsmokers = 7 mg) and once while wearing a placebo patch. On each day, participants performed three content-specific oddball tasks (perceptual, semantic, and emotional) that required them to press a button whenever they saw a novel target (20% of stimuli) embedded in a stream of common nontarget stimuli (80% of stimuli). Recognition memory for targets was subsequently tested. Reports of mood, smoking withdrawal, patch side effects, and blind success were collected in each session.
Results: Among smokers, compared to placebo, nicotine decreased target reaction time during all oddball tasks. Among nonsmokers, nicotine increased target detection accuracy and subsequent memory recognition. Nicotine’s enhancement on each respective measure was not task-content specific in either sample.
Conclusions: These data suggest that acute nicotine administration may exert direct beneficial effects on novelty detection and subsequent memory recognition in both smokers and nonsmokers. Moreover, these effects are not content-specific.