Gender Differences In Smokers And Effects On Nicotine Uptake

Open Access
Chen, Allshine
Graduate Program:
Public Health Sciences
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
July 07, 2015
Committee Members:
  • Joshua Ethan Muscat, Thesis Advisor
  • Cigarettes
  • Smoking
  • Topography
  • Gender Differences
  • Nicotine
  • Cotinine
Smoking profiles and nicotine uptake of conventional cigarettes vary greatly between individual smokers, but may be characterized by subject-specific factors. Previous studies suggest that men and women differ in smoking habits, cessation rates, and levels of nicotine absorption. However gender differences in puffing behaviors have not been widely explored. Our study is the first to describe gender differences of smoking topography measured in a naturalistic setting.The Pennsylvania Adult Smoking Study (PASS) of 332 adult cigarette smokers examined inhalation behaviors as predictors of nicotine uptake, utilizing portable handheld topography devices to capture the smokers’ profiles in a naturalistic environment. Participants completed a one-time pre-study interview along with a questionnaire that investigated a wide range of subject-specific characteristics. Cotinine (COT) and 3-hydroxy-cotinine (3HC) were collected from smokers’ saliva samples.Males had significantly higher puff volumes (52.95 ml versus 44.77 ml), cotinine levels (313.5 ng/ml versus 255.9 ng/ml), but lower nicotine metabolite ratio (0.396 versus 0.475) than females. Analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) was used to model the gender effect on nicotine uptake while accounting for covariates, and the Blinder-Oaxaca method was used to decompose the gender differences due to covariates[1-3]. The differences in covariates can explain up to 83% of the gender differences in nicotine uptake. Gender becomes superfluous in predicting nicotine uptake when height, weight, puff volume, and nicotine metabolism are taken into account. Having a thorough understanding of the dynamics of nicotine consumption will provide researchers further insight to aid in the development of treatment regimens, and give regulators necessary criteria to limit nicotine delivery in smoking tobacco.