Brain Structure Alterations in Respect to Tobacco Consumption and Nicotine Dependence
Τhis study conducted in order to examine the lifetime tobacco consumption and the degree of nicotine dependence related gray matter (GM) and white matter (WM) volume alterations in young adult-male smokers.
Light and heavy smokers displayed smaller GM and WM volumes than non-smokers, while heavy smokers were found with more significant brain atrophy than light smokers in GM areas of precuneus, inferior and middle frontal gyrus, superior temporal gyrus, cerebellum anterior lobe and insula, and in WM areas of cerebellum anterior lobe.
However, the contrary trend was observed regarding alterations associated with severity of nicotine dependence. Severe nicotine dependence smokers rather demonstrated less atrophy levels compared to moderate nicotine dependence smokers, especially in GM areas of precuneus, superior and middle temporal gyrus, posterior cingulate and insula, and in WM areas of precuneus, cerebellum anterior lobe and midbrain.
The results reveal that the nicotine dependence displays a dissimilar effect on the brain volume in comparison to the cigarette consumption.