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Nicotine Reinforcement and Aversion in Young Adult Light Smokers

Principal Investigator:  Mehmet Sofuoglu

Funding Mechanism: National Institutes of Health – Grant

ID number: 1R01DA042528-01

Award Date: 8/15/2016

Institution: Yale University


The critical threshold for nicotine reinforcement that underlies the addictive effects of nicotine has yet to be empirically validated by controlled human studies. The goal of this study is to use a novel intravenous (IV) nicotine self-administration model to estimate threshold reinforcing doses of nicotine and to generate dose-effect curves for low doses of nicotine in smokers. Study aims are: (1) to assess the threshold reinforcing dose and dose-effect curve for IV nicotine self-administration at low doses in young adult light and intermittent smokers (“chippers”); and (2) to assess the threshold and dose-effect curve for the positive and negative/aversive subjective effects of IV nicotine at low doses and its relationship to nicotine reinforcement. Researchers will enroll 72 young adult (ages 18-30) male and female light and intermittent smokers who show few or no signs of addiction. Smokers will participate in five experimental sessions. In each session, they will first be exposed to the assigned nicotine dose and the placebo (saline) dose followed by the opportunity to choose between nicotine and placebo administrations.