Effects of tobacco smoke constituents, anabasine and anatabine, on memory and attention in female rats.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Nicotine has been well characterized to improve memory and attention. Nicotine is the primary, but not only neuroactive compound in tobacco. Other tobacco constituents such as anabasine and anatabine also have agonist actions on nicotinic receptors. The current study investigated the effects of anabasine and anatabine on memory and attention. Adult female Sprague-Dawley rats were trained on a win-shift spatial working and reference memory task in the 16-arm radial maze or a visual signal detection operant task to test attention. Acute dose-effect functions of anabasine and anatabine over two orders of magnitude were evaluated for both tasks. In the radial-arm maze memory test, anabasine but not anatabine significantly reduced the memory impairment caused by the NMDA antagonist dizocilpine (MK-801). In the signal detection attentional task, anatabine but not anabasine significantly attenuated the attentional impairment caused by dizocilpine. These studies show that non-nicotine nicotinic agonists in tobacco, similar to nicotine, can significantly improve memory and attentional function. Both anabasine and anatabine produced cognitive improvement, but their effectiveness differed with regard to memory and attention. Follow-up studies with anabasine and anatabine are called for to determine their efficacy as therapeutics for memory and attentional dysfunction.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Levin, ED; Hao, I; Burke, DA; Cauley, M; Hall, BJ; Rezvani, AH

Published Date

  • October 2014

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 28 / 10

Start / End Page

  • 915 - 922

PubMed ID

  • 25122040

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC4305443

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1461-7285

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1177/0269881114543721


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States