Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Nicotine Helps Schizophrenics With Attention And Memory

Date:
July 11, 2005
Source:
Yale University
Summary:
Cigarette smoking may improve attention and short--term memory in persons with schizophrenia by stimulating nicotine receptors in the brain, according to a study by Yale School of Medicine researchers in the June issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry.

New Haven, Conn. -- Cigarette smoking may improve attention and short--term memory in persons with schizophrenia by stimulating nicotine receptors in the brain, according to a study by Yale School of Medicine researchers in the June issue of The Archives of General Psychiatry.

Persons with schizophrenia smoke two to three times more than smokers without mental illness, said the researchers. They found that when study subjects with schizophrenia stopped smoking, attention and short--term memory were more impaired, but, when they started smoking again, their cognitive function improved. No effects from stopping or resuming smoking were observed in smokers without mental illness.

Participants with and without schizophrenia were then asked to smoke while taking a drug called mecamylamine, which blocks nicotinic acetylcholine receptors in the brain, preventing the nicotine from acting on those receptors. Mecamylamine blocked the ability of smoking to improve cognitive deficits in schizophrenia, but not in persons without mental illness. The findings suggest that when people with schizophrenia smoke, they may in part be self--medicating with nicotine to remedy cognitive deficits.

"Our findings have significant implications for developing treatments for cognitive deficits and nicotine addiction in schizophrenia," said Kristi Sacco, associate research scientist in the Department of Psychiatry and first author of the study. She said the results may also help explain the high rates of smoking in people with schizophrenia. She added that this study does not suggest that people with schizophrenia who do not smoke should start smoking.

Tony George, M.D., associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry, is senior author of the study.

The study was funded by grants from The National Institute on Drug Abuse and the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression. The researchers are members of the Transdisciplinary Tobacco Use Research Center at Yale and the Program for Research in Smokers with Mental Illness. For more information about both projects please see www.quitwithyale.org and www.prism.yale.edu.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Yale University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Yale University. "Nicotine Helps Schizophrenics With Attention And Memory." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 July 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050710202418.htm>.
Yale University. (2005, July 11). Nicotine Helps Schizophrenics With Attention And Memory. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050710202418.htm
Yale University. "Nicotine Helps Schizophrenics With Attention And Memory." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/07/050710202418.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

Corporal Punishment on Decline, Debate Renews

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Corporal punishment in the United States is on the decline, but there is renewed debate over its use after Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

FDA Eyes Skin Shocks Used at Mass. School

AP (Sep. 15, 2014) The FDA is considering whether to ban devices used by the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Massachusetts, the only place in the country known to use electrical skin shocks as aversive conditioning for aggressive patients. (Sept. 15) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Shocker: Journalists Are Utterly Addicted To Coffee

Newsy (Sep. 13, 2014) A U.K. survey found that journalists consumed the most amount of coffee, but that's only the tip of the coffee-related statistics iceberg. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
'Magic Mushrooms' Could Help Smokers Quit

'Magic Mushrooms' Could Help Smokers Quit

Newsy (Sep. 11, 2014) In a small study, researchers found that the majority of long-time smokers quit after taking psilocybin pills and undergoing therapy sessions. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins