While there are aids available to help smokers quit their habits, unfortunately, most don’t have great success rates. However, researchers have discovered a bacterial enzyme that might prove to be more successful than smoking cessation aids that are currently on the market.

Pseudomonas putida is a bacterium that was isolated from tobacco fields, and researchers liken an enzyme from P. putida called NicA2 to a “Pac-Man” that eats nicotine. The theory is that NicA2 could possibly break down nicotine before it reaches the brain’s reward centers, making smoking seem less pleasurable, and thus and easier habit to kick.

In the laboratory, researchers worked with mice to show that adding NicA2 to doses of nicotine resulted in a much shorter half-life of the drug. The hope is that injections of the serum could last up to a month! Read more about this research here, and let’s hope that NicA2 works in humans!

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