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Drug Alcohol Depend. 2015 Jan 1;146:103-6. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2014.09.006. Epub 2014 Sep 18.

Blunted striatal responses to favorite-food cues in smokers.

Author information

1
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.
2
Department of Psychiatry Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA; Child Study Center, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA; Department of Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.
3
Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.
4
Department of Psychiatry Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA.
5
Department of Psychiatry Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA; Child Study Center, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA; Department of Neurobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA. Electronic address: marc.potenza@yale.edu.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Although tobacco-smoking is associated with relatively leaner body mass and smoking cessation with weight gain, the brain mechanisms underlying these relationships are not well understood. Smokers compared to non-smokers have shown diminished neural responses to non-tobacco rewarding stimuli (e.g., monetary rewards), but brain responses to favorite-food cues have not been investigated relative to smoking status. We hypothesized that smokers would exhibit diminished neural responses compared to non-smokers in response to favorite-food cues in motivation-reward and emotion-regulating regions of the brain.

METHODS:

Twenty-three smokers and 23 non-smokers matched based on body mass index (BMI), age, and gender listened to personalized favorite-food cue, stress, and neutral-relaxing audiotapes during fMRI.

RESULTS:

During favorite-food cue exposure, smokers versus non-smokers exhibited diminished activations in the caudate, putamen, insula, and thalamus. Neural responses during stress and neutral-relaxing conditions were similar across groups. Subjective food-craving ratings were similar across groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

The relatively diminished neural responses to favorite-food cues in smokers may contribute to lower BMI.

KEYWORDS:

BMI; Food cues; Smoking; fMRI

PMID:
25444233
PMCID:
PMC4272899
DOI:
10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2014.09.006
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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