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Nicotine Pharmaockinetics and Salivary pH of Large and Small Cigar Smokers

Nicotine Pharmaockinetics and Salivary pH of Large and Small Cigar Smokers

Principal Investigator: Wallace Pickworth, Megan Schroeder, and Lynn Hull

Funding Mechanism: Research Contract

ID number: HHSF223201310030I

Award Date: 7/14/2015

Institution: Battelle Memorial Institute


Cigar products are diverse, varying in tobacco weight, nicotine concentration, and tobacco pH. Despite rapid increases in cigar smoking prevalence, the risks of nicotine exposure and addiction have not been systematically studied. For example, although tobacco pH is an important factor in nicotine absorption, there is little evidence of how cigar tobacco pH affects nicotine bioavailability and nicotine absorption, two fundamental aspects in understanding a product's addictive potential. The goal of this study is to evaluate the nicotine pharmacokinetics and salivary pH of cigar smokers. Specific aims are: (1) to chemically characterize 20 cigars for nicotine content and tobacco pH; and (2) to evaluate the relationship among tobacco pH, salivary pH, and nicotine exposure in non-inhaling large (n=24) and small (n=24) cigar smokers. In three separate sessions designed to equate nicotine consumption, participants will smoke their own brand cigar and two cigars with similar nicotine content but different tobacco pH. Nicotine exposure, subjective effects, and salivary pH will be measured and compared. Study findings will provide new information about the impact of cigar tobacco pH and its relationship with oral nicotine absorption resulting from cigar use.