S. Casey Laizure, PharmD, professor in the Department of Clinical Pharmacy, at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) College of Pharmacy, has received a grant totaling $150,000 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, a part of the National Institutes of Health. The award will be used to support the study of caffeine disposition in humans after inhalation.
Over the next two years, as the award is distributed, Dr. Laizure will collaborate on this research with Robert Parker, PharmD, also a professor in the Department of Clinical Pharmacy at the UTHSC College of Pharmacy. Their goal is to study how rapidly caffeine gets into the body after an energy drink is consumed or a caffeine powder is inhaled. New types of caffeine-fortified supplements marketed to young adults can potentially be abused, especially in combination with alcohol. An important determinant of the potential for abuse is how fast the caffeine is absorbed into the body, with rapid absorption being associated with greater abuse potential.
This study will compare the absorption of caffeine from an energy drink to caffeine administered using an Aeroshot™ inhalation device. Anecdotal reports in the media suggest that the Aeroshot™ device results in a “caffeine buzz,” which suggests very rapid caffeine absorption. This will be the first study of caffeine blood levels achieved after using the Aeroshot™ device. The study is expected to provide important information about the abuse potential of this new method of caffeine use.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH), the nation’s medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.