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Pre-quit nicotine decreases nicotine self-administration and attenuates cue- and drug-induced reinstatement


Clemens, KJ and Stuart, A and Ferguson, SG, Pre-quit nicotine decreases nicotine self-administration and attenuates cue- and drug-induced reinstatement, Journal of Psychopharmacology, 33, (3) pp. 364-371. ISSN 0269-8811 (2019) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2019 The Authors

DOI: doi:10.1177/0269881118822074


Background: Administration of smoking cessation medications in anticipation of a nominated quit date can promote abstinence. How this occurs is not widely understood, but may be due to the disruption of contingencies between smoking behaviour and acute drug effects.

Aims: The aim of this study was to explore this relationship, we examined the effect of pre-quit nicotine replacement therapy on susceptibility to relapse in an animal model of nicotine dependence.

Methods: Rats were trained to intravenously self-administer nicotine across 20 days. Continuous low-dose nicotine was administered via a miniosmotic pump either across the last 7 days of self-administration and across 6 days of extinction, or across extinction only. Cue- and drug-induced reinstatements of responding were then measured with mini-pumps retained, the day after mini-pump removal or one week later.

Results: Pre-quit nicotine administration markedly reduced self-administration across the last days of training as the response, and its associated cues, no longer reliably predicted an acute drug effect. Pre-quit, but not post-quit, nicotine administration significantly attenuated cue-induced reinstatement once mini-pumps were removed, indicating that the contingency disruption across training reduced the conditioned reinforcing properties of the cue at test. Both pre-quit and post-quit nicotine attenuated nicotine-primed reinstatement.

Conclusions: Together these results suggest that administration of a nicotine replacement prior to a nominated quit date may enhance resistance to relapse via disruption of the contingency between a response, its associated cues, and a rewarding nicotine effect.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:pre-quit nicotine, self-administration, rat, nicotine replacement therapy, smoking cessation
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Biological psychology
Research Field:Behavioural neuroscience
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Public health (excl. specific population health)
Objective Field:Public health (excl. specific population health) not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Ferguson, SG (Professor Stuart Ferguson)
ID Code:134627
Year Published:2019
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:Medicine
Deposited On:2019-08-22
Last Modified:2020-08-14

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