Wanted: Cigarette Smokers to Participate in Roswell Park Study

Clinical research study will evaluate attitudes about smokeless tobacco products
Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Highlights: 
Study on smokeless tobacco products to recruit 200 smokers
Participants must be adults who smoke 10 or more cigarettes a day
Researchers interested in motivational factors behind use of smokeless tobacco

BUFFALO, NY — How willing are smokers to try different tobacco products based on the price? Researchers at Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) are asking that and other questions in a clinical study that examines the impact of price and other factors on the substitution of smokeless tobacco products for cigarettes.

Researchers are seeking 200 smokers who are willing to try new products and cut down on their smoking. To participate in the study, participants must be at least 18 years old, in good health, and must currently smoke at least 10 cigarettes per day. This behavioral-economics study will help to explain the motivation behind decisions about health and offer new insights on health-behavior change.

“There are few studies that have evaluated the attitudes of smokers who supplement cigarette use or switch to smokeless tobacco products,” said Richard O’Connor, PhD, a researcher in the Department of Health Behavior at RPCI and Director of the Institute’s Tobacco Research Laboratory. “This study will help assess a constellation of factors that impact decisions to use smokeless tobacco products.”

Smokeless tobacco, also known as spit tobacco, chewing tobacco, oral tobacco, dip, chew, snuff or snus, is tobacco that is not burned. The health risks associated with smokeless tobacco vary considerably across products. According to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration, 8.9 million people use smokeless tobacco. Some studies suggest that smokers have begun using smokeless tobacco as a temporary or ongoing substitute for cigarettes, and some products have been marketed to smokers for this purpose.

“The information obtained from this study will contribute to a greater understanding of the factors that are driving an increased use of smokeless tobacco,” said co-investigator of the study Martin Mahoney, MD, PhD, Associate Professor in the departments of Health Behavior and Medicine. “These results should help us to design more effective intervention strategies that will ultimately help smokers quit.”

Participants are asked to attend five sessions over five weeks and answer questions about their smoking and product use. They will be reimbursed for their time and travel. For more information, call 716-845-2365.

This research is supported by a grant from the National Cancer Institute.

Additional resources for New York smokers interested in quitting are available through the New York State Smokers’ Quitline, which is based at RPCI. Specially trained Quit Coaches provide free resources including evidence-based coaching and nicotine patches, as well as information about smoking cessation for health-care providers. To reach the Quitline, call 1-866-NY-QUITS or go to www.nysmokefree.com.

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The mission of Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) is to understand, prevent and cure cancer. Founded in 1898, RPCI is one of the first cancer centers in the country to be named a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and remains the only facility with this designation in Upstate New York. The Institute is a member of the prestigious National Comprehensive Cancer Network, an alliance of the nation’s leading cancer centers; maintains affiliate sites; and is a partner in national and international collaborative programs. For more information, visit www.roswellpark.org, call 1-877-ASK-RPCI (1-877-275-7724) or email askrpci@roswellpark.org. Follow Roswell Park on Facebook and Twitter.

Media Contact: 

Annie Deck-Miller, Senior Media Relations Manager
716-845-8593; annie.deck-miller@roswellpark.org