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NAQC Newsroom: Research

Effects of Short-Term Varenicline Administration on Emotional and Cognitive Processing in Healthy...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov
...Non-Smoking Adults: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Study.
Mocking RJ, Patrick Pflanz C, Pringle A, Parsons E, McTavish SF, Cowen PJ, Harmer CJ. Neuropsychopharmacology. 2012 Oct 17. doi: 10.1038/npp.2012.205. [Epub ahead of print]

This study examined the influence of varenicline on mood and behavior independent of smoking and smoking cessation. Subjects (n=41)were randomized to receive either varenicline or placebo over seven days. There was no difference between the two groups in terms of negative biases in emotional processing or mood. However, the varenicline group scored higher on working and declarative memory than the placebo group. The authors conclude that short-term varenicline use did not influence negative biases in emotional processing or impulsivity in non-smoking subjects, thereby not supporting direct depressogenic or suicidal risk behavior-inducing effects. In contrast, varenicline may have cognitive-enhancing effects.

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