Anger, anxiety, and depressive affect as predictors of stress-induced cortisol production in khat and tobacco users

Andrine M. Lemieux, Motohiro Nakajima, Riyadh Saif-Ali, Molham Al-Habori, Anisa Dokam, Mustafa al'Absi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Introduction: Glucocorticoid activity is disrupted in substance users including khat chewers who also use tobacco. Anger, dysphoria, and anxiety can mediate this relationship. The aim of this study was to contrast emotion dysregulation and substance use variables as predictors of post-stress cortisol output. Materials and methods: Comparable numbers of males (n = 90) and females (n = 85) including controls, khat only, and concurrent khat and tobacco users participated in a stress study. Depressive affect, anxiety, anger, substance use patterns, and saliva samples were collected following a standardized laboratory stress manipulation. Results: Regression analysis showed that high depression and low anxiety was associated with high post-stress cortisol, but only in co-users of tobacco and khat. Males, but not females, showed a significant association between co-use of khat and tobacco and cortisol, which appears to be mediated by frequency of use. The link between anxiety and post-stress cortisol in the co-users remained significant after controlling for nicotine dependence and substance use frequency. Conclusion: Anxiety predicted the neuroendocrine consequences of concurrent use of tobacco and khat above and beyond sex, nicotine dependence, anger, and substance use frequency. Sex differences, however, are related to differences in nicotine dependence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)195-201
Number of pages7
JournalAddictive Behaviors
Volume82
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was funded by a National Institute of Health/Fogerty International Center FIRCA grant (R03TW007219), a National Institute for Drug Abuse R21 (DA024626), and a grant from the Office of International Programs at the University of Minnesota. The funders played no role in the study design, implementation, analysis or interpretation of the data. They also did not play a role in the preparation of this manuscript. We thank the following for their help with the recruitment and data collection: Abed Sameai, Basma Ali Thabet, Khaled Al-Sahmiry, and Belqis Alsanaani.

Funding Information:
This study was funded by a National Institute of Health/Fogerty International Center FIRCA grant ( R03TW007219 ), a National Institute for Drug Abuse R21 ( DA024626 ), and a grant from the Office of International Programs at the University of Minnesota . The funders played no role in the study design, implementation, analysis or interpretation of the data. They also did not play a role in the preparation of this manuscript. We thank the following for their help with the recruitment and data collection: Abed Sameai, Basma Ali Thabet, Khaled Al-Sahmiry, and Belqis Alsanaani.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018

Keywords

  • Anger
  • Anxiety
  • Cortisol
  • Depressive affect
  • Khat
  • Tobacco

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