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Coffee and cigarettes: Research sheds new light on nicotine and morning brew

Date:
August 17, 2022
Source:
University of Florida
Summary:
Coffee affects the brain's nicotine receptors, which might explain the coffee-cigarette morning combo familiar to smokers.
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FULL STORY

For some smokers, the first cigarette of the day is just not as satisfying without a cup of coffee. That could be more than just a morning habit: Chemical compounds in roasted coffee beans may help lighten the effects of morning nicotine cravings, University of Florida researchers have found.

In a cell-based study, the researchers identified two compounds in coffee that directly affect certain high-sensitivity nicotine receptors in the brain. In smokers, these brain receptors can be hypersensitive after a night of nicotine withdrawal.

The recently published findings have yet to be tested in humans but are an important step toward better understanding how coffee and cigarettes affect nicotine receptors in the brain, said Roger L. Papke, Ph.D., a pharmacology professor in the UF College of Medicine. Caffeine is coffee's feel-good ingredient for most people but smokers may get another kind of boost.

"Many people like caffeine in the morning but there are other molecules in coffee that may explain why cigarette smokers want their coffee," Papke said.

The researchers applied a dark-roasted coffee solution to cells that express a particular human nicotine receptor. An organic chemical compound in coffee may help restore the nicotine receptor dysfunction that leads to nicotine cravings in smokers, the researchers concluded.

The findings have led Papke to a broader hypothesis: One of the compounds in brewed coffee, known as n-MP, may help to quell morning nicotine cravings.

Papke said he was intrigued by the idea that nicotine-dependent smokers associate tobacco use with coffee in the morning and alcohol in the evening. While alcohol's effect on nicotine receptors in the brain has been thoroughly researched, the receptors' interaction with coffee has been studied less.

"Many people look for coffee in the morning because of the caffeine. But was the coffee doing anything else to smokers? We wanted to know if there were other things in coffee that were affecting the brain's nicotine receptors," Papke said.

The findings, he said, provide a good foundation for behavioral scientists who could further study nicotine withdrawal in animal models.

Funding for the research was provided by the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

Materials provided by University of Florida. Original written by Doug Bennett. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Roger L. Papke, Madison Karaffa, Nicole A. Horenstein, Clare Stokes. Coffee and cigarettes: Modulation of high and low sensitivity α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by n-MP, a biomarker of coffee consumption. Neuropharmacology, 2022; 216: 109173 DOI: 10.1016/j.neuropharm.2022.109173

Cite This Page:

University of Florida. "Coffee and cigarettes: Research sheds new light on nicotine and morning brew." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 August 2022. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2022/08/220817135444.htm>.
University of Florida. (2022, August 17). Coffee and cigarettes: Research sheds new light on nicotine and morning brew. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 13, 2024 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2022/08/220817135444.htm
University of Florida. "Coffee and cigarettes: Research sheds new light on nicotine and morning brew." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2022/08/220817135444.htm (accessed April 13, 2024).

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