Nicotine polacrilex dose effects: serum nicotine levels and sensory characteristics

S. J. Leischow, D. P.L. Sachs, M. D. Hansen, A. G. Bostrom

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


This study evaluated serum nicotine and sensory differences of five different doses of nicotine polacrilex (0.0, 0.5, 1.0, 2.0 and 4.0 mg nicotine), three of which have been used as placebo doses in clinical trials (0.0, 0.5, and 1.0 mg) and two of which are currently available as pharmacologic treatments for smoking cessation (2.0 or 4.0 mg nicotine). Twenty-one smokers received, on different days and in random order, five pieces of each of the five doses of polacrilex. The objective of the study was to evaluate whether consistent serum nicotine and sensory differences would be observed between the doses. After 5 h use, the 0.0, 0.5, 1.0, 2.0, and 4.0 mg doses produced the following results: (1) there was a linear trend across the placebo doses of nicotine polacrilex in serum nicotine and nicotine flavor, although pairwise dose comparisons were not significant, (2) the 0.0 and 0.5 mg placebo doses resulted in serum nicotine and sensory ratings that were significantly different from the 2.0 mg dose, and even more so from the 4.0 mg dose, (3) the 1.0 mg dose was not different from the 2.0 mg dose on serum nicotine level and several sensory characteristics, though it was different from the 4.0 mg dose on both, and (4) the 4.0 mg dose resulted in significantly higher serum nicotine and usually higher sensory ratings than the 2.0 mg dose. Since the 0.0 mg placebo achieves sensory effects that are comparable to the nicotine-containing placebo doses, it is recommended over the 0.5 and 1.0 mg doses as the nicotine polacrilex placebo of choice in most clinical trials.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)125-129
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1995


  • Nicotine
  • Nicotine polacrilex
  • Sensory
  • Smoking Placebo

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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