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Qualitative Study on Nicotine: Knowledge, Beliefs, and Misperceptions

Principal Investigator: Denise Dickinson and Sarah Johnson

Funding Mechanism: Research Contract

ID number: HHSF223201110005B

Award Date: 8/24/2013

Institution: RTI

Consumer perceptions and misperceptions about nicotine, the highly addictive component in tobacco products, may impact tobacco initiation, use, and cessation. This project will employ focus groups to examine consumer knowledge, beliefs, and misperceptions about nicotine as it relates to the use of tobacco products. Investigators will conduct 16 focus groups (including 8-10 participants each) with adults and adolescents, including both users and non-users of tobacco products, in three different U.S. cities. Four groups will be conducted with adolescents aged 16-17; two groups will include current tobacco users, and two will include adolescents classified as “at risk” of initiating tobacco use. The remaining twelve groups will include adults aged 18 and older who are current tobacco users. Focus group participants will vary in terms of race, age, and educational attainment in order to represent the diversity of the population. Topics will relate to participants’ knowledge and perceptions about nicotine in tobacco products, including the health effects associated with nicotine. Findings may inform the FDA’s efforts to implement the provisions of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act related to educating the public about the harms of tobacco use.

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