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The Relationship Between Marijuana and Conventional Cigarette Smoking Behavior from Early Adolescence to Adulthood

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An Erratum to this article was published on 17 April 2017


Longitudinal analyses investigated (a) the co-occurrence of marijuana use and conventional cigarette smoking within time and (b) bidirectional associations between marijuana and conventional cigarette use in three developmental periods: adolescence, young adulthood, and adulthood. A cross-lag model was used to examine the bidirectional model of marijuana and conventional cigarette smoking frequency from ages 13 to 33 years. The bidirectional model accounted for gender, school-age economic disadvantage, childhood attention problems, and race. Marijuana use and conventional cigarette smoking were associated within time in decreasing magnitude and increased cigarette smoking predicted increased marijuana use during adolescence. A reciprocal relationship was found in the transition from young adulthood to adulthood, such that increased conventional cigarette smoking at age 24 years uniquely predicted increased marijuana use at age 27 years, and increased marijuana use at age 24 years uniquely predicted more frequent conventional cigarette smoking at age 27 years, even after accounting for other factors. The association between marijuana and cigarette smoking was found to developmentally vary in the current study. Results suggest that conventional cigarette smoking prevention efforts in adolescence and young adulthood could potentially lower the public health impact of both conventional cigarette smoking and marijuana use. Findings point to the importance of universal conventional cigarette smoking prevention efforts among adolescents as a way to decrease later marijuana use and suggest that a prevention effort focused on young adults as they transition to adulthood would lower the use of both cigarette and marijuana use.

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Correspondence to Allison N. Kristman-Valente.

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Funding Support

This work was supported by grant nos. 1R01DA02441-07, 5R01DA003721-08, and 5R01DA021426-11 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and RWJ21548 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The content of this paper is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the funding agencies.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. All activities associated with this study were approved by the UW Institutional Review Board.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained for all participants in the study.

Additional information

The original version of this article was revised: Due to an oversight, the middle initial of author Tiffany M. Jones was written incorrectly as A rather than M.

An erratum to this article is available at

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Kristman-Valente, A.N., Hill, K.G., Epstein, M. et al. The Relationship Between Marijuana and Conventional Cigarette Smoking Behavior from Early Adolescence to Adulthood. Prev Sci 18, 428–438 (2017).

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