Steven Stellman - Comparison of serum cotinine concentration within and across smokers of menthol and nonmenthol cigarette brands among non-Hispanic black and non-Hispanic white U.S. adult smokers, 2001-2006

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  Caraballo, R. S., Holiday, D. B., Stellman, S. D., Mowery, P. D.,   Giovino, G. A., Muscat, J. E., Eriksen, M. P., Bernert, J. T.,   Richter, P. A., Kozlowski, L. T. 20 (7) 1329-40-

  Abstract: BACKGROUND: The Food and Drug   Administration (FDA) is examining options for regulating menthol   content in cigarettes. There are many pharmacologic properties of   menthol that may facilitate exposure to tobacco smoke, and it has   been suggested that the preference for menthol cigarettes in   black smokers accounts for their higher cotinine levels.   OBJECTIVE: To assess cigarettes smoked per day-adjusted cotinine   levels in relation to smoking a menthol or nonmenthol cigarette   brand among non-Hispanic black and white U.S. adult smokers under   natural smoking conditions. METHOD: Serum cotinine concentrations   were measured in 1,943 smokers participating in the 2001 to 2006   National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES). The   effect of smoking a menthol brand on cigarettes smoked per   day-adjusted serum cotinine levels in these two populations was   modeled by adjusting for sex, age, number of smokers living in   the home, body weight, time since last smoked, and FTC (Federal   Trade Commission)-measured nicotine levels. The 8- or 12-digit   Universal Product Code (UPC) on the cigarette label was used to   determine the cigarette brand and whether it was menthol.   RESULTS: Smoking a menthol cigarette brand versus smoking a   nonmenthol cigarette brand was not associated (P >/= 0.05)   with mean serum cotinine concentration in either black or white   smokers. CONCLUSIONS: The higher levels of cotinine observed in   black smokers compared with white smokers are not explained by   their higher preference for menthol cigarette brands. IMPACT:   Further studies like ours are needed to improve our ability to   understand health consequences of future changes in tobacco   product design.

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