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Cigarettes Made from Tobacco with Less Nicotine May Help Smokers Quit

UCSF Study Points to No Increase in Smoking

By Jeffrey Norris | July 2, 2012

Cigarettes Made from Tobacco with Less Nicotine May Help Smokers Quit

Neal Benowitz, MD

In a small, controlled study of 135 smokers between the ages of 18 and 70, smokers who switched to cigarettes with tobacco that contains less nicotine did not compensate by smoking more cigarettes and inhaling more tar and toxins.

“The idea is to reduce people’s nicotine intake, so that they get used to the lower levels, and eventually get to the point where smoking is no longer satisfying,” said UCSF nicotine researcher Neal Benowitz, who led the study.

The new study results differ greatly from those obtained in studies conducted years earlier by Benowitz and others on previous generations of so-called low-nicotine delivery cigarettes.

UCSF has long been a leader in exploring strategies for smoking cessation, in exposing tobacco industry marketing practices, in designing public health programs related to tobacco, and in conducting biological research aimed at better understanding tobacco addiction and susceptibility. UCSF also is home to the Tobacco Control Archives —a wealth of legal documents and other materials.

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