Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Committee Chair(s)

Amy Odum


Amy Odum


Christopher Warren


Gregory Madden


Kerry Jordan


Erin Bobeck


Charles C.J. Frye, a graduate student in the Behavior Analysis program at Utah State University, completed this dissertation as part of the requirements of the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology.

Alcohol and Nicotine are the two most commonly abused drugs in the United States, often used at the same time. The goal of the dissertation was to more fully understand how exposure to one drug alters motivation for the other. In Chapter I, we investigated how exposure to nicotine affects relapse for alcohol in rats. Nicotine did not affect relapse for alcohol, possibly due to the method of nicotine delivery used. In Chapter II, we investigated how exposure to nicotine and nicotine combined with MAOI (a drug commonly used as an antidepressant and found in tobacco cigarettes) affects motivation for alcohol in rats. We found that nicotine increased motivation for alcohol, but nicotine combined with MAOI reduced motivation for alcohol. Chapter IV consisted of 3 experiments using hypothetical purchase tasks with human participants. In Experiment 1, we assessed how the hypothetical opportunity to smoke cigarettes at a concert influenced purchasing of hypothetical alcohol. We found that having the opportunity to smoke did not alter purchasing alcohol. In Experiment 2, we assessed the opposite relation: how the hypothetical opportunity to drink alcoholic beverages at a concert altered purchasing of hypothetical tobacco cigarettes. We found that the Maximum Expenditure was greater when participants were told that they could not drink alcohol at the concert. Lastly, in Experiment 3, we assessed how consumption of alcohol and cigarettes was affected by manipulating the price of one of the drugs. Specifically, we assessed how purchasing of tobacco cigarettes changed (despite a constant price) when we increased the cost of alcoholic beverages. We also assessed how the purchasing of alcoholic beverages changed (despite a constant price) when we increased the price of tobacco cigarettes. We found that tobacco cigarette purchasing was independent of alcohol beverage price and alcoholic beverage purchasing was independent of tobacco cigarette price. Each study in this dissertation produced surprising results and has the potential to stimulate new research questions.



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