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Novel therapeutic and drug development strategies for tobacco use disorder: endocannabinoid modulation

Butler, Kevin and Le Foll, B (2020) Novel therapeutic and drug development strategies for tobacco use disorder: endocannabinoid modulation. Expert Opinion on Drug Discovery, 15 (9). pp. 1065-1080. ISSN 1746-045X

Item Type: Article


Introduction: Tobacco use disorder (TUD) is a chronic relapsing condition. Existing pharmacotherapy can assist smokers to initiate smoking cessation, but relapse rates remain high. Novel therapeutics are required to help people quit and also to prevent relapse. The endocannabinoid system has been increasingly implicated in reward and addiction processes and the cannabinoid CB1 receptor inverse agonist rimonabant has been shown to be effective at promoting smoking cessation but has been associated with adverse psychiatric side effects.
Areas covered: Multiple converging factors likely contribute to the maintenance of smoking and cause relapse including nicotine reinforcement, propensity to reinstate drug seeking (induced by nicotine priming, nicotine-associated cues, and stress), the severity of withdrawal signs and executive function status. Studies assessing the impact of endocannabinoid (CB1 receptor, CB2 receptor, anandamide, and 2-arachidonoylglycerol) modulation on these addiction-related factors are reviewed.
Expert opinion: Endocannabinoid research in TUD is at a relatively early stage. Based on current evidence, CB1 receptor neutral antagonists and fatty acid amide hydrolase inhibitors demonstrate positive effects in studies assessing several addiction-related factors. This suggests they offer the greatest promise as novel cessation and anti-relapse agents. Future research avenues are discussed, notably to translate findings into humans.

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Depositing User: Kevin Butler


Item ID: 14085
ISSN: 1746-045X
Official URL:

Users with ORCIDS

ORCID for Kevin Butler: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 04 Oct 2021 14:24
Last Modified: 25 Jan 2022 08:50


Author: Kevin Butler ORCID iD
Author: B Le Foll

University Divisions

Faculty of Health Sciences and Wellbeing > School of Psychology


Sciences > Health Sciences
Sciences > Pharmacy and Pharmacology
Psychology > Psychology

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