Tobacco psychopharmacology and public health policy: It takes a community

Jack E. Henningfield

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


This commentary is based upon the author's lecture given as the 2010 recipient of the award named in honor of Drs. Joseph V. Brady and Charles R. Schuster, given by the Psychopharmacology and Substance Abuse Division (Division 28) of the American Psychological Association (APA). The focus is on the contributions of many behavioral pharmacology researchers who collaborated very much in the spirit of an interactive community dedicated to the common cause of advancing science in service of public health. Division 28 and its members hold a prominent place in this account because, throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the Division was the lead scientific forum for bringing together researchers addressing the behavioral pharmacology of tobacco and nicotine. The commentary provides an overview of how advances utilizing animal and human models of dependence and withdrawal came to inform public health policy and more recently, tobacco product regulation. The commentary also recounts how efforts by the tobacco industry collided with those of nonindustry researchers, including Division 28 members, and how this was taken up in congressional hearings that addressed behavioral pharmacology research on tobacco. The review concludes with an overview of current challenges to behavioral pharmacology researchers to assist in guiding the regulation of tobacco products by the United States Food and Drug Administration and other national regulatory authorities, as well as guiding the implementation of the international tobacco treaty-the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)249-262
Number of pages14
JournalExperimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2011


  • Addiction
  • Behavioral pharmacology
  • Nicotine
  • Regulation
  • Treaty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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