Research Summary

I am Professor of Medicine and Bioengineering & Therapeutic Sciences and Chief of the Division of Clinical Pharmacology at San Francisco General Hospital. With over 500 publications, I am a leading authority on the human pharmacology of nicotine and nicotine addiction. My laboratory also is a leading site for biomarker assessment of tobacco toxicant exposure. I am former president of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (SRNT), and the recipient of the Ove Ferno SRNT Award for Clinical Research on Nicotine and Tobacco. I have been a contributing author or editor to six US Surgeon General's Reports on tobacco including the 2010 Surgeon General's Report—How Tobacco Smoke Causes Disease: The Biology and Behavioral Basis for Smoking-Attributable Disease.

Research Funding

  • August 15, 2018 - July 31, 2020 - Cigarette Harm Reduction with Scheduled Electronic Cigarette Use, Principal Investigator. Sponsor: NIH/NIDA, Sponsor Award ID: U01DA045519
  • September 1, 1999 - June 30, 2020 - Drug Dependence Clinical Research Program, Co-Principal Investigator. Sponsor: NIH/NIDA, Sponsor Award ID: P30DA012393
  • July 1, 1977 - June 30, 2020 - Clinical Pharmacology, Drug Action and Pharmacogenetics, Co-Principal Investigator. Sponsor: NIH/NIGMS, Sponsor Award ID: T32GM007546
  • April 1, 2013 - March 31, 2019 - Technology Innovations for Supporting Health in Alaska Native People, Co-Principal Investigator. Sponsor: NIH/NHLBI, Sponsor Award ID: R01HL117736


Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY
University of Rochester School of Medicine, Rochester, NY, MD, 1969, Medicine
Bronx Municipal Hospital Center, Bronx, New York, Intern and Resident, Internal Medicine, 1969-1971
Fellow in Clinical Pharmacology, Department of Medicine, University of California San Francisco, 1971-1972

Honors & Awards

  • Oscar B. Hunter Award
  • Ove Ferno Award
  • 2002
  • UCSF Annual Distinguished Clinical Research Lecturer
  • Rawls Palmer Award for Progress in Medicine
  • Alton Ochsner Award Relating Smoking and Health
  • 1994-2002
  • NIDA Merit Award
  • American Board of Internal Medicine (Diplomate, 1968)
  • American Board of Medical Toxicology
  • American Board of Clinical Pharmacology
  • American Federation for Clinical Research (President 1996 to 1997)
  • American Society for Clinical Inves-tigation
  • American Society of Clinical Pharma-cology and Therapeutics
  • American Society for Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
  • Association of American Physicians
  • Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco (President, 1996-1997)

Selected Publications

  1. Aquilina NJ, Jacob P, Benowitz NL, Fsadni P, Montefort S. Secondhand smoke exposure in school children in Malta assessed through urinary biomarkers. Environ Res. 2021 Nov 22; 112405.  View on PubMed
  2. Chenoweth MJ, Peng AR, Zhu AZX, Cox LS, Nollen NL, Ahluwalia JS, Benowitz NL, Knight J, Swardfager W, Tyndale RF. Does sex alter the relationship between CYP2B6 variation, hydroxybupropion concentration, and bupropion-aided smoking cessation in African Americans? A moderated mediation analysis. Addiction. 2021 Nov 17.  View on PubMed
  3. Chenoweth MJ, Cox LS, Nollen NL, Ahluwalia JS, Benowitz NL, Lerman C, Knight J, Tyndale RF. Analyses of nicotine metabolism biomarker genetics stratified by sex in African and European Americans. Sci Rep. 2021 Oct 01; 11(1):19572.  View on PubMed
  4. Benowitz NL, Liakoni E. Tobacco use disorder and cardiovascular health. Addiction. 2021 Sep 29.  View on PubMed
  5. El-Boraie A, Tanner JA, Zhu AZX, Claw KG, Prasad B, Schuetz EG, Thummel KE, Fukunaga K, Mushiroda T, Kubo M, Benowitz NL, Lerman C, Tyndale RF. Functional characterization of novel rare CYP2A6 variants and potential implications for clinical outcomes. Clin Transl Sci. 2021 Sep 03.  View on PubMed
  6. Nides M, Rigotti NA, Benowitz N, Clarke A, Jacobs C. A Multicenter, Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Phase 2b Trial of Cytisinicline in Adult Smokers (The ORCA-1 Trial). Nicotine Tob Res. 2021 Aug 29; 23(10):1656-1663.  View on PubMed
  7. Balfour DJK, Benowitz NL, Colby SM, Hatsukami DK, Lando HA, Leischow SJ, Lerman C, Mermelstein RJ, Niaura R, Perkins KA, Pomerleau OF, Rigotti NA, Swan GE, Warner KE, West R. Balancing Consideration of the Risks and Benefits of E-Cigarettes. Am J Public Health. 2021 09; 111(9):1661-1672.  View on PubMed
  8. Benowitz NL, St Helen G, Liakoni E. Clinical Pharmacology of Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS): Implications for Benefits and Risks in the Promotion of the Combusted Tobacco Endgame. J Clin Pharmacol. 2021 Aug; 61 Suppl 2:S18-S36.  View on PubMed
  9. Palmer AM, Toll BA, Carpenter MJ, Donny EC, Hatsukami DK, Rojewski AM, Smith TT, Sofuoglu M, Thrul J, Benowitz NL. Reappraising Choice in Addiction: Novel Conceptualizations and Treatments for Tobacco Use Disorder. Nicotine Tob Res. 2021 Jul 16.  View on PubMed
  10. Liakoni E, Tyndale RF, Jacob P, Dempsey DA, Addo N, Benowitz NL. Effect of race and glucuronidation rates on the relationship between nicotine metabolite ratio and nicotine clearance. Pharmacogenet Genomics. 2021 07 01; 31(5):97-107.  View on PubMed
  11. Shi L, Hatsukami DK, Koopmeiners JS, Le CT, Benowitz NL, Donny EC, Luo X. A mixed effects model for analyzing area under the curve of longitudinally measured biomarkers with missing data. Pharm Stat. 2021 Jun 20.  View on PubMed
  12. Liu J, Benowitz NL, Hatsukami DK, Havel CM, Lazcano-Ponce E, Strasser AA, Jacob P. 3-Ethenylpyridine Measured in Urine of Active and Passive Smokers: A Promising Biomarker and Toxicological Implications. Chem Res Toxicol. 2021 06 21; 34(6):1630-1639.  View on PubMed
  13. Beard E, Jackson SE, Anthenelli RM, Benowitz NL, Aubin LS, McRae T, Lawrence D, Russ C, Krishen A, Evins AE, West R. Estimation of risk of neuropsychiatric adverse events from varenicline, bupropion and nicotine patch versus placebo: secondary analysis of results from the EAGLES trial using Bayes factors. Addiction. 2021 10; 116(10):2816-2824.  View on PubMed
  14. Giratallah HK, Chenoweth MJ, Addo N, Ahluwalia JS, Cox LS, Lerman C, George TP, Benowitz NL, Tyndale RF. Nicotine metabolite ratio: Comparison of the three urinary versions to the plasma version and nicotine clearance in three clinical studies. Drug Alcohol Depend. 2021 06 01; 223:108708.  View on PubMed
  15. Northrup TF, Stotts AL, Suchting R, Matt GE, Quintana PJE, Khan AM, Green C, Klawans MR, Johnson M, Benowitz N, Jacob P, Hoh E, Hovell MF, Stewart CJ. Thirdhand smoke associations with the gut microbiomes of infants admitted to a neonatal intensive care unit: An observational study. Environ Res. 2021 06; 197:111180.  View on PubMed
  16. Vogel EA, Benowitz NL, Skan J, Schnellbaecher M, Prochaska JJ. Correlates of the nicotine metabolite ratio in Alaska Native people who smoke cigarettes. Exp Clin Psychopharmacol. 2021 Apr 15.  View on PubMed
  17. Prochaska JJ, Vogel EA, Benowitz N. Nicotine delivery and cigarette equivalents from vaping a JUULpod. Tob Control. 2021 Mar 24.  View on PubMed
  18. Rezk-Hanna M, Seals DR, Rossman MJ, Gupta R, Nettle CO, Means A, Dobrin D, Cheng CW, Brecht ML, Mosenifar Z, Araujo JA, Benowitz NL. Ascorbic Acid Prevents Vascular Endothelial Dysfunction Induced by Electronic Hookah (Waterpipe) Vaping. J Am Heart Assoc. 2021 02; 10(5):e019271.  View on PubMed
  19. Tarran R, Barr RG, Benowitz NL, Bhatnagar A, Chu HW, Dalton P, Doerschuk CM, Drummond MB, Gold DR, Goniewicz ML, Gross ER, Hansel NN, Hopke PK, Kloner RA, Mikheev VB, Neczypor EW, Pinkerton KE, Postow L, Rahman I, Samet JM, Salathe M, Stoney CM, Tsao PS, Widome R, Xia T, Xiao D, Wold LE. E-Cigarettes and Cardiopulmonary Health. Function (Oxf). 2021; 2(2):zqab004.  View on PubMed
  20. Aquilina NJ, Havel CM, Cheung P, Harrison RM, Ho KF, Benowitz NL, Jacob Iii P. Ubiquitous atmospheric contamination by tobacco smoke: Nicotine and a new marker for tobacco smoke-derived particulate matter, nicotelline. Environ Int. 2021 05; 150:106417.  View on PubMed

Go to UCSF Profiles, powered by CTSI