Navigation Links
Researchers find why nicotine in cigarettes may relieve anxiety in smokers
Date:11/8/2012

RICHMOND, Va. (Nov. 9, 2012) Preclinical data suggests inactivation of a specific sub-class of nicotinic receptors may be an effective strategy to help smokers quit without feeling anxious, according to Virginia Commonwealth University researchers.

These findings could one day point researchers to the development of novel therapies to help smokers quit without feeling anxious.

Smokers use cigarettes for many reasons, but many report that they smoke to relieve anxiety, despite the health danger of cigarette smoking. Researchers are now working to understand the underlying neurochemical pathways that support smoking behavior.

In a study, published online this week in PLoS ONE, researchers observed that low doses of nicotine and a nicotinic receptor blocker had similar effects to reduce anxiety-like behavior in an animal model. They found that inactivation of beta2 subunit, a specific sub-class of nicotinic receptors that bind nicotine, appears to reduce anxiety. This is different from the mechanism that regulates nicotine reward and likely occurs in a separate brain area.

"This work is unique because it suggests that nicotine may be acting through inactivation, rather than activation, of the high affinity nicotinic receptors," said Darlene Brunzell, Ph.D., assistant professor in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology in the VCU School of Medicine.

"Nicotine acts like a key that unlocks nicotine receptors in the brain. Usually that key opens the receptor, but at other times nicotine is like a key that has gotten broken inside of the lock. Our findings suggest that low-dose nicotine may block a specific subtype of receptor from opening that is important for regulating anxiety behavior," she said, adding that anxiety is a major reason why people relapse to smoking.

Brunzell and colleagues are conducting ongoing studies that they hope will help to identify which brain areas regulate the anxiolytic effects of nicotine. Using genetic strategies, they are attempting to determine the specific molecular make-up of the nicotinic receptors that regulate anxiety.

According to Brunzell, from a therapeutic perspective it will be important to discover if blocking beta2 subunit containing nicotinic receptors relieves anxiety in smokers.

"Understanding what other subunits combine with beta2 to form the critical receptors that regulate anxiety could lead to selective therapeutics with fewer side effects," she said.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sathya Achia Abraham
sbachia@vcu.edu
804-827-0890
Virginia Commonwealth University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. NIH awards $20 million over 5 years to train next generation of global health researchers
2. Researchers develop a new cell and animal model of inflammatory breast cancer
3. Researchers uncover a viable way for colorectal cancer patients to overcome drug resistance
4. Researchers Find Gene Mutations That May Be a Key to Autism
5. Researchers find evidence of banned antibiotics in poultry products
6. NJ stroke researchers report advances in spatial neglect research at AAN Conference
7. Autism by the numbers: Yale researchers examine impact of new diagnostic criteria
8. Researchers Map Brain Regions Linked to Intelligence
9. Researchers ID Genes That May Determine Mental Illness
10. Researchers Develop Blood Test for Depression
11. University of Cincinnati researchers win $3.7M grant from US Department of Defense
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Researchers find why nicotine in cigarettes may relieve anxiety in smokers
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Veteran Theresa James awoke to the sound of her newly ... “Healing Tears,” James depicts every parent’s worst nightmare, when her three children were violently ... and situations throughout my divorce,” James said. “After the death of my children, I ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... ... My T Chai, a South African company that creates a number of ... a popular website specializing in sales of nutritional products. , Chai tea is ... It spread across Asia and Africa quickly, and today recipes vary from region to ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... April 24, 2017 , ... In 2017, up to ... approximately 25,000 of them will be malignant.(1) As research into precision medicine continues, ... healthcare model in the diagnosis and treatment of brain tumors. Healthcare facilities that ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... 2017 , ... As a former supermodel known for her timeless beauty, Joan ... single women is that she put all the words in her new book, "Manifest ... personal experiences and sparkling sense of humor have inspired her to write a book ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... April 24, 2017 , ... ... shows that over the last decade, student well-being has seriously declined. "When disenfranchised ... of formal education, join the Islamic State to turn the historic multi-ethnic and ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/19/2017)... , Tenn. and DALLAS , April ... EndoStim, Inc., announced that the first patients in ... the EndoStim device in the Lower Esophageal Sphincter Stimulation ... a minimally-invasive implantable device designed to provide long-term reflux ... neurostimulation. GERD affects nearly 65 million people ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... , April 19, 2017 ... stimulate an immune response in pets such as ... products are of various types such as Attenuated ... Toxoid Vaccines, DNA Vaccines and Recombinant Vaccines. Attenuated ... as virus or bacteria, which have been weakend ...
(Date:4/19/2017)... 2017  SARES•REGIS Group leased the first of ... Conejo Spectrum Business Park in Thousand ... Inc. , a biopharmaceutical company developing meaningful therapies ... have been underserved by scientific innovation, with an ... autoimmune and infectious disease. Before commencement ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: