Cancer Institute

  • Thomas J. Payne

    Professor, Department of Otolaryngology and Communicative Sciences
    Cancer Epidemiology Program
    PhD, Clinical Psychology, 1987, State University of New York at Binghamton, NY
    Resident, 1986-87, University of Mississippi / VA Medical Centers Consortium

    Contact information
    ACT Center for Tobacco Treatment, Education and Research
    UMHC Cancer Institute, 350 W. Woodrow Wilson Drive, Suite ME-102
    Jackson, MS 39213
    Phone: (601) 815-1180


    Research interests

    • Genetics of nicotine dependence
    • Genetic and psychological factors associated with tobacco treatment outcomes
    • Sociocultural factors associated with cardiovascular disease

    Research synopsis

    Tobacco use remains one of the most significant causes of many forms of cancer on a global basis. The overall goal of our research program is to better understand factors associated with the persistence of tobacco use, as well as predict successful treatment outcome, i.e., achieving abstinence. Our genetics research efforts comprise a substantial, long-term component of this work. In conjunction with our colleagues, this research group has published numerous papers over the last 10 years identifying a wide variety of specific genes and genetic profiles that are associated with nicotine dependence. This work has contributed substantial evidence regarding the importance of ethnicity in determining the role of specific genetic variants. Most recently, we have directed our efforts toward the role of genetics as it relates to phenotypic characteristics associated with nicotine dependence, the impact on treatment outcome and medication response, and psychometric aspects of key instruments. Other psychological / behavioral research related to tobacco use and dependence has been conducted in the areas of cue reactivity; treatment adherence; psychosocial factors associated with treatment outcome; healthcare provider attitudes, confidence and practices regarding tobacco treatment, and the impact of training experiences on those characteristics. Dr. Payne is also involved in research examining the role of sociocultural factors on cardiovascular disease risk in African-Americans. This work is conducted via his association with the Jackson Heart Study; Dr. Payne is one of the founding members of the sociocultural research group, having established the model and primary methodology for conducting this work.

    Recent accomplishments and honors

    • 2009 - UMMC Bronze Medallion Research Award
    • 2006-08 - Vice President, Association for the Treatment of Tobacco Use and Dependence (ATTUD)
    • 2007 - Fellow, Society of Behavioral Medicine

    Selected publications

    • Ethnic-specific genetic association of variants in the corticotropin-releasing hormone receptor 1 gene with nicotine dependence. Tang X, Zhan S, Yang L, Cui W, Ma JZ, Payne TJ, Li MD. Biomed Res Int. 2015;2015:263864. doi: 10.1155/2015/263864. Epub 2015 Feb 22
    • The contribution of rare and common variants in 30 genes to risk nicotine dependence. Yang, J., Wang, S., Yang, Z., Hodgkinson, C.A., Iarikova, P., Ma, J.Z., Payne, T.J., Goldman, D., & Li, M.D. (2014). Molecular Psychiatry 2014 doi: 10.1038/mp.2014.156. [Epub ahead of print].
    • Significant associations of CHRNA2 and CHRNA6 with nicotine dependence in European American and African American populations. Wang S, D van der Vaart A, Xu Q, Seneviratne C, Pomerleau OF, Pomerleau CS, Payne TJ, Ma JZ, Li MD. Hum Genet. 2014 May;133(5):575-86. doi: 10.1007/s00439-013-1398-9. Epub 2013 Nov 20 PMID: 24253422
    • Introduction to deep sequencing and its application to drug addiction research with a focus on rare variants. Wang S, Yang Z, Ma JZ, Payne TJ, Li MD. Mol Neurobiol. 2014 Feb;49(1):601-14. doi: 10.1007/s12035-013-8541-4. Epub 2013 Aug 30.
    •  Depressive symptoms among heavy cigarette smokers: the influence of daily rate, gender, and race. Payne TJ, Ma JZ, Crews KM, Li MD. Nicotine Tob Res. 2013 Oct;15(10):1714-21. doi: 10.1093/ntr/ntt047. Epub 2013 Apr 8. PMID: 23569006
    • Tobacco dependence treatment: influence of training experiences on clinical activities among otolaryngologists. Sutton MJ, Payne TJ, Gaughf NW, Crews KM, Elci OU, Peck SB, Schweinfurth J. “Laryngoscope. 2013 Dec;123(12):3005-9. doi: 10.1002/lary.23513. Epub 2013 Oct 1 PMID: 24122575
    • Tobacco cessation via public dental clinics: Results of a randomized trial. Gordon JS, Andrews JA, Albert DA, Crews KC, Payne TJ, Severson HH (2010). American Journal of Public Health, 100, 1307-1312.
    • Significant association of ANKK1 and detection of a functional polymorphism with nicotine dependence in an African American sample. Huang W, Payne TJ, Ma JZ, Beuten J, Dupont RT, Inohara N, Li MD (2009).Neuropsychopharmacology, 34, 319-330.
    • Association and interaction analysis of variants in CHRNA5/CHRNA3/CHRNB4 gene cluster with nicotine dependence in African and European Americans. Li MD, Xu Q, Lou X-Y, Payne TJ, Ma JZ (2009).American Journal of Medical Genetics. Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics, 9999, 1-12.
    • Treatment for tobacco dependence for rural, lower-income smokers: Outcomes, predictors, and measurement considerations. Sheffer CE, Stitzer M, Payne TJ, Applegate BW, Bourne D, Wheeler JG. (2009). American Journal of Health Promotion, 23, 328-338.