Tengfei's menthol paper is published by Frontiers Behavioral Neuroscience

Menthol facilitates the intravenous self-administration of nicotine in rats

Tengfei Wang, Bin Wang and Hao Chen

Front. Behav. Neurosci., 16 December 2014 | doi: 10.3389/fnbeh.2014.00437


Menthol is the number one additive to tobacco products. We identified the cooling sensation of menthol as a conditioned cue for nicotine self-administration in adolescent rats. We showed that contingent cooling sensation promoted nicotine intake, induced strong extinction burst and relapse to nicotine seeking. The summary figure on the left showed that the amount of nicotine intake when different sensory cues were used. Menthol or cues inducing a cooling sensation maintained similar amount of nicotine intake, while olfactory or gustatory cues did not support nicotine intake.