Developmental toxicity of nicotine: A transdisciplinary synthesis and implications for emerging tobacco products

Lucinda J. England, Kjersti Aagaard, Michele Bloch, Kevin Conway, Kelly Cosgrove, Rachel Grana, Thomas J. Gould, Dorothy K Hatsukami, Frances Jensen, Denise Kandel, Bruce Lanphear, Frances Leslie, James R. Pauly, Jenae Neiderhiser, Mark Rubinstein, Theodore A. Slotkin, Eliot Spindel, Laura Stroud, Lauren Wakschlag

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

59 Scopus citations

Abstract

While the health risks associated with adult cigarette smoking have been well described, effects of nicotine exposure during periods of developmental vulnerability are often overlooked. Using MEDLINE and PubMed literature searches, books, reports and expert opinion, a transdisciplinary group of scientists reviewed human and animal research on the health effects of exposure to nicotine during pregnancy and adolescence. A synthesis of this research supports that nicotine contributes critically to adverse effects of gestational tobacco exposure, including reduced pulmonary function, auditory processing defects, impaired infant cardiorespiratory function, and may contribute to cognitive and behavioral deficits in later life. Nicotine exposure during adolescence is associated with deficits in working memory, attention, and auditory processing, as well as increased impulsivity and anxiety. Finally, recent animal studies suggest that nicotine has a priming effect that increases addiction liability for other drugs. The evidence that nicotine adversely affects fetal and adolescent development is sufficient to warrant public health measures to protect pregnant women, children, and adolescents from nicotine exposure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)176-189
Number of pages14
JournalNeuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews
Volume72
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

Keywords

  • Electronic nicotine delivery systems
  • Nicotine
  • Priority/special populations

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    England, L. J., Aagaard, K., Bloch, M., Conway, K., Cosgrove, K., Grana, R., Gould, T. J., Hatsukami, D. K., Jensen, F., Kandel, D., Lanphear, B., Leslie, F., Pauly, J. R., Neiderhiser, J., Rubinstein, M., Slotkin, T. A., Spindel, E., Stroud, L., & Wakschlag, L. (2017). Developmental toxicity of nicotine: A transdisciplinary synthesis and implications for emerging tobacco products. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 72, 176-189. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.11.013