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Pacific professor to study tobacco addiction with $375K grant

HarrelsonPacific University School of Pharmacy associate professor John Harrelson has received a three-year grant of $375,127 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse within the National Institutes of Health to investigate

new treatments for tobacco addiction.

He’ll research the effectiveness of a dietary agent, cinnamaldehyde, which could help curb addiction. Cinnamaldehyde is a natural product that provides the characteristic aroma to cinnamon oil and cinnamon powder.

The team’s preliminary research — supported by grants from Oregon Health and Science University’s Medical Research Foundation, Pacific Research Institute for Science and Mathematics, and Pacific University — indicates that cinnamaldehyde is an inhibitor of a key enzyme that metabolizes nicotine.

The findings are significant

because previous studies show-

ed that differences in nicotine metabolism influence smoking behavior.