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Lisa Fucito, PhD

Associate Professor of Psychiatry; Director, Tobacco Treatment Service, Psychiatry

Research Summary

Cigarette smoking and heavy alcohol consumption are the first and third preventable causes of death and disease in the U.S., respectively. Both also frequently co-occur with other modifiable lifestyle risk behaviors such as deficient sleep, physical inactivity/poor nutrition, and mental health concerns. Despite these risks, a substantial number of individuals are unable to successfully quit smoking or reduce their drinking. Current efficacious treatments have limitations: (1) not integrated with primary and/or specialty healthcare where most individuals who smoke and/or drink are treated; (2) do not address the multimorbidities that frequently accompany these behaviors; and (3) pose accessibility barriers. There is a need to identify effective integrated models that attenuate healthcare barriers as well as interventions that generalize across multiple lifestyle risk behaviors. Multiple health behavior change interventions have the potential to maximize health benefits and reduce health costs.

My research focuses on:

  1. Developing novel prevention and intervention strategies that promote multiple health behavior change.
  2. Using health feedback (e.g., biosensor data & biomarkers) to motivate health behavior change.
  3. Testing sleep interventions as a "gateway" for addressing other lifestyle risk behaviors.
  4. Utilizing technology to assess and deliver interventions to reduce treatment access barriers.
  5. Identifying factors that optimize treatment response and mediate behavior change.
  6. Examining harm reduction strategies and interventions.
  7. Characterizing lifestyle risk behavior profiles.

Specialized Terms: Treatments for tobacco and alcohol use; Moderators of treatment response; Risk behavior mechanisms; Sleep disturbance and substance use; Multiple health behavior change; M-health; Health feedback

Extensive Research Description

Current Research Projects:

Deep phenotyping of heavy drinking in young adults with behavioral scales, neuropsychological tasks, and smartphone sensing technology. PIs: Fucito (Contact), DeMartini. Funding: NIAAA R01AA030136. This 12-month observational study will evaluate the clinical heterogeneity in heavy drinking and alcohol use disorder (AUD) risk across neurofunctional domains of executive function, incentive salience, negative emotionality, sleep/circadian, and social processes in young adults. Participants will complete behavioral scales, web-based neuropsychological tasks, and smartphone daily diaries every 3 months and undergo continuous passive collection of data from their smartphones for 12 months. The results will advance the science of young adult AUD neurobiology and identify efficient, valid assessments for distinguishing alcohol risk in this group

A photoplethysmography sensor-based personalized feedback intervention for heavy-drinking young adults targeting heart rate variability, resting heart rate, and sleep. PI: Fucito. Funding: NIAAA R21AA028886. The current proposal will conduct the first controlled test of a feedback/brief advice intervention targeting HRV, RHR, and sleep via PPG sensors and smartphone daily diaries for young adults who drinking heavily. This study will yield important preliminary data to support a larger investigation of this novel approach.

A preliminary test of concurrent vs. sequential cessation of dual cigarette and e-cigarette use on behavior, tobacco toxicant exposure, and health effects. Pilot PI: Fucito. Funding: NCI P50CA196530. The purpose of this study is to evaluate quitting cigarettes and e-cigarettes at the same time versus stopping use of these products one at a time on behavior and measures of tobacco toxicant exposure, inflammation, and oxidative stress in adults who report dual use of both products.

Gain-framed messages and NRT sampling to promote smoking cessation in lung cancer screening programs PI: Toll; Yale Site PI: Fucito. Funding: NCI R01CA207229. The purpose of this study is to test a mobile tobacco intervention for promoting smoking cessation among adults who smoke undergoing lung cancer screening.

Contingency management to promote smoking abstinence in cancer patients. PI: Toll; Yale Site PI: Fucito. Funding: NCI R01CA251158. This project will conduct a randomized, controlled test of the effect of adding contingency management to standard smoking cessation treatment to enhance rates of smoking cessation for patients before their cancer surgery.


Research Interests

Alcohol Drinking; Alcoholism; Nicotine; Sleep; Technology; Exercise; Tobacco Use Cessation; Vulnerable Populations; Harm Reduction; Secondary Prevention; Tertiary Prevention; Sedentary Behavior; Mobile Applications; Tobacco Use; Sleep Hygiene; Health Risk Behaviors

Public Health Interests

Behavioral Health; Mental Health; Substance Use, Addiction

Selected Publications

Clinical Trials

ConditionsStudy Title
Addictive Behaviors; Tobacco AddictionVarenicline for treatment of e-cigarette dependence
Alcohol Addiction; Men's Health; Women's HealthA PPG Sensor-Based Feedback Intervention for Heavy Drinking Young Adults
Addictive Behaviors; Mental Health & Behavioral Research; Tobacco AddictionSwitching to Potential Reduced Exposure Products in Adult Smokers (JUUL)