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Cannabidiol Reverses Attentional Bias to Cigarette Cues in a Human Experimental Model of Tobacco Withdrawal

Hindocha, C; Freeman, T; Grabski, M; Stroud, J; Crudgington, H; Davies, A; Das, R; ... Curran, V; + view all (2018) Cannabidiol Reverses Attentional Bias to Cigarette Cues in a Human Experimental Model of Tobacco Withdrawal. Addiction , 113 (9) pp. 1696-1705. 10.1111/add.14243. Green open access

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Background and Aims: Cannabidiol (CBD), a non‐intoxicating cannabinoid found in cannabis, may be a promising novel smoking cessation treatment due to its anxiolytic properties, minimal side effects and research showing that it may modify drug cue salience. We used an experimental medicine approach with dependent cigarette smokers to investigate if (1) overnight nicotine abstinence, compared with satiety, will produce greater attentional bias (AB), higher pleasantness ratings of cigarette‐related stimuli and increased craving and withdrawal; and (2) CBD in comparison to placebo, would attenuate AB, pleasantness of cigarette‐related stimuli, craving and withdrawal and not produce any side effects. // Design: Randomized, double‐blind cross‐over study with a fixed satiated session followed by two overnight abstinent sessions. // Setting: UK laboratory. // Participants: Thirty non‐treatment‐seeking, dependent cigarette smokers recruited from the community. // Intervention and comparator: 800 mg oral CBD, or matched placebo (PBO) in a counterbalanced order. // Measurements: AB to pictorial tobacco cues was recorded using a visual probe task and an explicit rating task. Withdrawal, craving, side effects, heart rate and blood pressure were assessed repeatedly. // Findings: When participants received PBO, tobacco abstinence increased AB (P = 0.001, d = 0.789) compared with satiety. However, CBD reversed this effect, such that automatic AB was directed away from cigarette cues (P = 0.007, d = 0.704) and no longer differed from satiety (P = 0.82). Compared with PBO, CBD also reduced explicit pleasantness of cigarette images (P = 0.011; d = 0.514). Craving (Bayes factor = 7.08) and withdrawal (Bayes factor = 6.95) were unaffected by CBD, but greater in abstinence compared with satiety. Systolic blood pressure decreased under CBD during abstinence. // Conclusions: A single 800‐mg oral dose of cannabidiol reduced the salience and pleasantness of cigarette cues, compared with placebo, after overnight cigarette abstinence in dependent smokers. Cannabidiol did not influence tobacco craving or withdrawal or any subjectively rated side effects.

Type: Article
Title: Cannabidiol Reverses Attentional Bias to Cigarette Cues in a Human Experimental Model of Tobacco Withdrawal
Location: New York, NY
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/add.14243
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1111/add.14243
Language: English
Additional information: © 2018 The Authors. Addiction published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Society for the Study of Addiction. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Abstinence, attentional bias, cannabidiol, cigarette dependence, craving, withdrawal
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10049661
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