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TSRI scientists discover molecular ‘switch’ that could reduce nicotine addiction

TSRI scientists discover molecular ‘switch’ that could reduce nicotine addiction

Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute have discovered that a lipid in brain cells may act as a “switch” to increase or decrease the motivation to consume nicotine. [More]
Small differences in specific genetic variant could alter nicotine consumption

Small differences in specific genetic variant could alter nicotine consumption

Nicotine is an addictive substance and genetic factors are known to play a role in smoking behaviors. Recently, a team of researchers at Penn State and the University of Colorado determined how small differences in a particular region of the mouse genome can alter nicotine consumption. [More]
Smoking rates remain alarmingly high among American Indians, LGBT smokers and people with mental health issues

Smoking rates remain alarmingly high among American Indians, LGBT smokers and people with mental health issues

While the overall number of people who smoke in the United States is at an all-time low, not everyone is quite ready to celebrate. "We're making great strides, but it's evident that there are large groups of people who continue to struggle with tobacco and the chronic diseases associated with it," said Amy Lukowski, Psy.D., clinical director of Health Initiatives at National Jewish Health in Denver and for its QuitLogix program, the largest non-profit smoking quitline in the country. [More]
UF Health researcher reveals how betel nut's psychoactive chemical works in the brain

UF Health researcher reveals how betel nut's psychoactive chemical works in the brain

For hundreds of millions of people around the world, chewing betel nut produces a cheap, quick high but also raises the risk of addiction and oral cancer. Now, new findings by a University of Florida Health researcher reveal how the nut's psychoactive chemical works in the brain and suggest that an addiction treatment may already exist. [More]
New research shows nicotine increases codeine-induced analgesia

New research shows nicotine increases codeine-induced analgesia

According to new research in rat models, nicotine use over time increases the speed that codeine is converted into morphine within the brain, by increasing the amount of a specific enzyme. It appears smokers' brains are being primed for a bigger buzz from this common pain killer - which could put them at a higher risk for addiction, and possibly even overdose. [More]
Study: Nurses can play pivotal role in helping reduce smoking rates in China

Study: Nurses can play pivotal role in helping reduce smoking rates in China

China has a big smoking problem. Three-hundred-fifty million Chinese people smoke and 1 million deaths a year in China are attributed to smoking-related illnesses. By 2020, that's expected to double to 2 million Chinese people dying annually from using tobacco. [More]
UK Biobank genetic study shows link between lung disease and smoking behaviour

UK Biobank genetic study shows link between lung disease and smoking behaviour

New research published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine and presented at this year's European Respiratory Society meeting in Amsterdam presents the first analyses of genetic data from the UK Biobank that reveal new associations with lung disease and smoking behaviour. [More]
Three studies point to mGluR2 as new molecular target for addiction treatment

Three studies point to mGluR2 as new molecular target for addiction treatment

The latest issue of Biological Psychiatry presents the results of three studies implicating metabotropic glutamate receptor 2 (mGluR2) as a new molecular target for the treatment of addiction. [More]
Nicotine reinforcement demonstrated in study with ‘never-smokers’

Nicotine reinforcement demonstrated in study with ‘never-smokers’

In a study with 18 adults who had never smoked, scientists at Johns Hopkins report they have demonstrated one of the earliest steps — nicotine “reinforcement” — in the process of addiction, and shown that some people are far more vulnerable to nicotine addiction than others. [More]
Study points to genetic/metabolic factors that make people vulnerable to nicotine addiction

Study points to genetic/metabolic factors that make people vulnerable to nicotine addiction

In a study with 18 adults who had never smoked, scientists at Johns Hopkins report they have demonstrated one of the earliest steps — nicotine "reinforcement" — in the process of addiction, and shown that some people are far more vulnerable to nicotine addiction than others. [More]
Penns' Abramson Cancer Center rated as 'exceptional' by NCI

Penns' Abramson Cancer Center rated as 'exceptional' by NCI

The University of Pennsylvania's Abramson Cancer Center (ACC) has received an "exceptional" rating by the National Cancer Institute during an extensive peer-review process for its five-year competitive research support grant. The rating is the highest possible for an NCI cancer center. [More]
NIDA announces recipients of Avenir Award programs for HIV/AIDS, genetics or epigenetics research

NIDA announces recipients of Avenir Award programs for HIV/AIDS, genetics or epigenetics research

The National Institute on Drug Abuse today announced the first six recipients of its two newly developed Avenir Award programs for HIV/AIDS and genetics or epigenetics research. The Avenir (meaning "future" in French) Awards support early stage investigators who propose highly innovative studies. The six scientists will each receive up to $300,000 per year for five years to support their research. [More]
Neuroscientists identify novel brain circuitry that increases anxiety during nicotine withdrawal

Neuroscientists identify novel brain circuitry that increases anxiety during nicotine withdrawal

In a promising breakthrough for smokers who are trying to quit, neuroscientists at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and The Scripps Research Institute have identified circuitry in the brain responsible for the increased anxiety commonly experienced during withdrawal from nicotine addiction. [More]
UC Irvine professor explores the link between autism and ADHD

UC Irvine professor explores the link between autism and ADHD

For the better part of the last decade, a growing body of research has been revealing more and more similarities between attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and autism. [More]
TSRI Scientists find that nicotine use increases compulsive alcohol consumption

TSRI Scientists find that nicotine use increases compulsive alcohol consumption

Why do smokers have a five to ten times greater risk of developing alcohol dependence than nonsmokers? Do smokers have a greater tendency toward addiction in general or does nicotine somehow reinforce alcohol consumption? [More]
Increasing minimum age of legal access to tobacco products would reduce smoking, save lives

Increasing minimum age of legal access to tobacco products would reduce smoking, save lives

Increasing the minimum age of legal access (MLA) to tobacco products will prevent or delay initiation of tobacco use by adolescents and young adults, particularly those ages 15 to 17, and improve the health of Americans across the lifespan, says a new report from the Institute of Medicine. [More]
Raising sale age for tobacco products to 21 may prevent adolescents from taking up smoking

Raising sale age for tobacco products to 21 may prevent adolescents from taking up smoking

Raising the minimum age to buy cigarettes to 21 would save lives by preventing adolescents from ever taking up smoking, a new report suggests. [More]
Study suggests that strong beliefs can treat nicotine addiction

Study suggests that strong beliefs can treat nicotine addiction

Two identical cigarettes led to a discovery by scientists at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute. Study participants inhaled nicotine, yet they showed significantly different brain activity. Why the difference? Some subjects were told their cigarettes were nicotine free. [More]
Nicotine addiction medication produces greater reductions in smoking prior to quitting

Nicotine addiction medication produces greater reductions in smoking prior to quitting

Among cigarette smokers not willing or able to quit smoking in the next month but willing to reduce with the goal of quitting in the next 3 months, use of the nicotine addiction medication varenicline for 24 weeks compared with placebo produced greater reductions in smoking prior to quitting and increased smoking cessation rates at the end of treatment and at 1 year, according to a study in the February 17 issue of JAMA. [More]
Electronic cigarettes and smoking cessation: an interview with Professor Peter Hajek

Electronic cigarettes and smoking cessation: an interview with Professor Peter Hajek

The electronic cigarette has been invented by Chinese pharmacist Hon Lik in 2003. The rise in electronic cigarettes (EC) popularity was initially a grass root phenomenon. EC are estimated to be at least 95% safer than cigarettes and they appeal to smokers who cannot or do not want to stop smoking, but who want to reduce the risks smoking poses to their health. [More]
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