Targeting Reward-Relevant Nicotinic Receptors in the Discovery of Novel Pharmacotherapeutic Agents to Treat Tobacco Dependence

  • Linda P. Dwoskin
  • Marharyta Pivavarchyk
  • B. Matthew Joyce
  • Nichole M. Neugebauer
  • Guangrong Zheng
  • Zhenfa Zhang
  • Michael T. Bardo
  • Peter A. Crooks
Part of the Nebraska Symposium on Motivation book series (NSM, volume 55)


Tobacco Alkaloids and Tobacco Use

Tobacco dependence is a significant health concern and the most preventable cause of death in the United States. Tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum) contains numerous pharmacologically active alkaloids of which nicotine is considered to be the primary alkaloid responsible for tobacco dependence (Balfour, 2002; Pomerleau & Pomerleau, 1992). Studies investigating the effects of minor tobacco alkaloids have demonstrated their pharmacological activity and interaction with nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs; Dwoskin et al., 1995; Papke, Dwoskin & Crooks, 2007; Wei et al., 2005). In particular, the minor tobacco alkaloid and nicotine metabolite, nornicotine, likely contributes to tobacco dependence (Crooks & Dwoskin, 1997; Ghosheh, Dwoskin, Li, & Crooks, 1999; Ghosheh, Dwoskin, Miller, & Crooks, 2001) and warrants further investigation.

Nicotinic Receptor-Mediated Dopamine Release in Nicotine Reward

Nicotine acts as an agonist at all known nAChR...



This work was supported by a National Cooperative Drug Discovery Group research grant NIH U19 DA017548.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Linda P. Dwoskin
    • 1
  • Marharyta Pivavarchyk
  • B. Matthew Joyce
  • Nichole M. Neugebauer
  • Guangrong Zheng
  • Zhenfa Zhang
  • Michael T. Bardo
  • Peter A. Crooks
  1. 1.Department of Pharmaceutical SciencesCollege of Pharmacy, University of KentuckyLexington

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