SEX DIFFERENCE IN SMOKING BEHAVIOR AND THE BASIC MECHANISM OF THE NICOTINE EFFECTS
Nicotine is the primary component of tobacco that causes its habitual use. Smoking is responsible for diseases and death. Therefore there are a lot of cessation and replacement therapy programs to give up smoking. Although tobacco smoking has declined over the past 30 years, the decline has been less pronounced in women and especially in adolescent girls than in men. Studies made to clarify the underlying causes of this fact reveal that smoking behavior may be different in men then women. Nicotine acts on the dopaminergic system of the brain that leads the smoking behavior. In some studies, nicotine induced dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens; a very important point in the rewarding system is higher in female rats then in males. It is assumed that, this difference is related to the hormones and it is proven that, in ovariectomized rats, nicotine induced dopamine release in nucleus accumbens is declined. It is likely that estrogen is effective on smoking behavior and cessation. It is necessary that gender differences should be considered for better success of cessation and replacement therapy programs and therapeutic approaches should be developed under this point of view.