Vaccines to combat smoking

Rick A. Bevins, Jamie L. Wilkinson, Sam D. Sanderson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Background: Current US FDA-approved biological therapies for treating smoking target central nervous system processes. Although these therapies have had some success, relapse within a year is still high. Clearly additional strategies are needed to aid individuals in maintaining abstinence. Objective/methods: We briefly discuss promising research using vaccines to combat smoking and then identify some potentially important directions for future research. Results/conclusions: Immunization with a nicotine vaccine generates drug-specific antibodies that sequester some of the nicotine in the peripheral circulation preventing it from entering the brain, thus decreasing its addictive effects. Albeit promising, much more research is necessary to identify more efficacious vaccine designs and formulations, as well as optimal immunization regimens. A further understanding of the factors contributing to the substantial individual differences in immunogenicity to these vaccines and how to best use vaccines in combination with other treatment strategies will increase the success of intervention efforts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)379-383
Number of pages5
JournalExpert Opinion on Biological Therapy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2008


  • Cigarette
  • Cotinine
  • Drug-specific antibody
  • Immune system
  • Immunotherapy
  • Nicotine addiction
  • Tobacco

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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