A test of the opponent-process model as an explanation for cigarette smoking

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Anne Louise Murray (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
P. Scott Lawrence

Abstract: There have been many models of smoking behavior which emphasized psychosocial aspects of smoking, but few which incorporated recent physiological data on the effects of nicotine. Warburton and Wesnes (1983) used these data to elaborate upon the opponent-process model developed by Solomon and Corbit (1973). The Warburton and Wesnes version of this model states that nicotine, as a cholinergic agonist, increases cortical arousal, thereby resulting in improved cognitive functioning. In turn, anticipatory stress and distractability are decreased. The present study undertook to test some of the predictions of this model. Subjects were selected on the basis of smoking history to be nonsmokers or pack-a-day, mid-range nicotine smokers. Half of each of these two groups of subjects were given nicotine gum to chew, half given a placebo. Subjects performed a letter cancellation (LC) task both alone and while unpredictable shock was administered. Dependent measures were the number of correctly cancelled letters and change in heart rate (HR) between rest and task performance.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 1986
Tobacco $x Physiological effect
Cigarette smokers $x Psychological testing
Nicotine $x Physiological aspects
Smoking $x Physiological aspects

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