Smoking and Nicotine

L. G. Costa, Michael Aschner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Smoking is the most common source of exposure to nicotine. This natural compound exerts pharmacological effects in the central nervous system that are due to the activation of specific cholinergic nicotinic receptors. Most adverse health effects of smoking are due to other components of tobacco smoke, but nicotine is responsible for dependency. Exposure to high levels of nicotine may result in neurotoxicity; however, of more concern are the potential long-term effects of in utero exposure to nicotine on the behavior of the offspring. Smoking has also been shown to exert neuroprotective effects in certain neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease or dementia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of the Neurological Sciences
PublisherElsevier Inc.
Number of pages1
ISBN (Electronic)9780123851574
ISBN (Print)9780123851581
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014


  • Acetylcholine nicotinic receptors
  • Addiction
  • Neuroprotection
  • Nicotine
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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