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Yale TCORS: Yale Center for the Study of Tobacco Product Use and Addiction: Flavors, Nicotine and Other Constituents (YCSTP)

Principal Investigator(s): Suchitra Krishnan-Sarin and Stephanie O'Malley

Funding Mechanism: National Institutes of Health – TCORS Grant

ID number: 2 U54 DA036151-06

Award Date: 8/15/18

Institution: Yale University


The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act prohibits adding characterizing artificial or natural flavors to tobacco cigarettes other than tobacco flavor and menthol. Menthol and a wide variety of flavors, however, are in other tobacco products.  Research addressing the influence of flavors on the appeal of tobacco/nicotine and the initiation, progression and maintenance of tobacco use can inform further regulation of flavors. Toward this end, the Yale Center for the Study of Tobacco Product Use and Addiction (YCSTP) will examine the role of different classes of sweet and cool flavors, including sweeteners. on initiation, continued use and addiction to nicotine/tobacco, and their relevance to harm reduction. Researchers will integrate biological and behavioral testing in animal models and in humans to generate a firm scientific foundation for potential future regulation of flavors in tobacco products. Project 1 will examine whether preconditioning to flavors and sweeteners influences nicotine use behaviors and addiction and will evaluate the influence of novel cooling agents, which may ultimately replace menthol in tobacco products. Project 2 will examine the influence of sweet and cool flavors on initiation behaviors in youth who are susceptible to future use; it will also evaluate whether sweet and cool flavors have different impacts on nicotine reward and switching behaviors in both younger and older combustible tobacco users. Project 3 will determine the optimal delivery rate needed by tobacco users to relieve nicotine withdrawal while producing minimal positive effects, and whether the influence of this delivery rate is altered if combustible tobacco users switch from using mentholated to non-mentholated products. This TCORS may inform future regulatory activities related to flavors in tobacco products.


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