Tobacco Regulatory, Experimental & Clinical Science Lab

Theodore L. Wagener, PhD
Director & Assistant Professor of Pediatrics

Associate Director for Training, Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center

Dr. Wagener is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Pediatrics and the Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center of the Stephenson Cancer Center. His research focuses generally in tobacco regulatory science, with a specialized focus on the psycho/behavioral pharmacology of electronic cigarettes and hookah. Dr. Wagener also conducts research developing and testing novel methods to reduce children's exposure to secondhand smoke, including motivational and harm reduction strategies.


B.A. - Psychology (minor Philosophy) - College of Wooster (Ohio)
PhD - Clinical Psychology (Behavioral Medicine track) - Oklahoma State University

Clinical Psychology Residency (Behavioral Medicine track) - Brown Medical School
NIH T32 Postdoctoral Fellowship Cardiovascular Behavioral Medicine - Brown Medical School

Current Grant Funding:

  • NIH/NIDA R03 DA041928, 09/15/2016 – 08/31/2018 (PI: Wagener)                 
    The Impact of Waterpipe Tobacco Flavors on Waterpipe Smoking Intentions, Perceptions, Patterns, and Toxicant Exposure.
    Role:  Principal Investigator
    Total Cost: $222,000

  • NIH/NCI R01 CA194158, 09/30/2016 - 08/31/2021 (PI: Wagener)                  
    Examination of First and Second Generation E-cigarettes
    Role: Principal Investigator
    Total Cost: $3,365,226

  • NIDA/FDA R03DA041928-02S1, 09/01/2017 – 08/31/2018   (PI: Wagener)
    The Impact of Waterpipe Tobacco Sweeteners on Waterpipe Smoking Intentions, Perceptions, Patterns, and Toxicant Exposure
    Role: Principle Investigator
    Total Cost: $62,074

  • NCI R01 CA210625, 08/01/2017 – 07/31/2022, (PI: Carpenter) 
    A Naturalistic Nationwide Randomized Study of e-Cigarette Uptake and Consequences
    Role: Co-Investigator
    Total Cost: $2,616,376

  • NIH/NIDA R21 DA042960, 09/01/2017-07/31/2019, (PI: Vickerman)
    Enhanced E-cigarette Coaching Intervention for Dual Users of Cigarettes and E-cigarettes
    Role: Co-Investigator
    Total Cost:

  • NIH/NCI P20 CA202921, 09/24/2015 - 08/31/2019 (PI: Spicer)
    Cherokee Nation/Stephenson Cancer Center Collaborative on Cancer Disparities
    Role: Co-Investigator
    Annual Direct Cost: $242,968

  • NIH/NCI R33 CA202898, 04/08/2016 – 03/31/2019 (PI: Queimado) 
    A Novel Molecular Assay for Early Detection and Assessment of Cancer Risk                               Role:  Co-Investigator
    Total Cost: $641,486

  • NIH/NIDA R21DA038001, 07/15/2015 – 06/30/2017 (PI: Versace)
    Neurobehavioral Assessment of Reward Sensitivity in Young Smokers
    Role: Co-Investigator
    Total Cost: $370,000

  • NIH/NIDA  R36 DA042208, 07/01/2016 – 06/30/2018 (PI: Mowls)
    Nicotine metabolism in American Indian smokers and electronic cigarette users
    Role: Co-Mentor/Co-Investigator
    Total Cost: $121,024

  • NIH/NIDA F31 DA04252, 08/15/2016 - 08/14/2018 (PI: Leavens)
    Effect of Alcohol Use on Waterpipe Smoking Patterns and Toxicant Exposure
    Total Cost: $86,146
    Role: Primary Sponsor

Recent Publications: (italics denote student/staff authors; *denotes senior author)

Leavens, E. L., Brett, E. I., Frank, S., Shaikh, R. A., Leffingwell, T. R., Croff, J. M., & *Wagener, T. L. (2017). Association between breath alcohol concentration and waterpipe lounge patrons’ carbon monoxide exposure: A field investigation. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 170, 152-155.

Wagener, T. L., Floyd, E. L., Stepanov, I., Driskill, L. M., Frank, S. G., Meier, E., Leavens EL, Tackett AP, Molina N, & Queimado, L. (2016). Have combustible cigarettes met their match? The nicotine delivery profiles and harmful constituent exposures of second-generation and third-generation electronic cigarette users. Tob Control. doi:10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2016-053041

Wagener, T. L., Shaikh, R. A., Meier, E., Tackett, A. P., Tahirkheli, N. N., Leavens, E. L., & Driskill, L. (2016). Examining the Smoking and Vaping Behaviors and Preferences of Vape Shop Customers. Tobacco Prevention & Cessation, 2(Supplement). doi:10.18332/tpc/65150

Wagener, T. L., Meier, E., Tackett, A. P., Matheny, J. D., & Pechacek, T. F. (2016). A Proposed Collaboration Against Big Tobacco: Common Ground Between the Vaping and Public Health Community in the United States. Nicotine Tob Res, 18(5), 730-736. doi:10.1093/ntr/ntv241

Busch, A. M., Leavens, E. L.,Wagener, T. L., Buckley, M. L., & Tooley, E. M. (2016). Prevalence, Reasons for Use, and Risk Perception of Electronic Cigarettes Among Post-Acute Coronary Syndrome Smokers. J Cardiopulm Rehabil Prev. doi:10.1097/HCR.0000000000000179

James, S. A., Meier, E. M., Wagener, T. L., Smith, K. M., Neas, B. R., & Beebe, L. A. (2016). E-Cigarettes for Immediate Smoking Substitution in Women Diagnosed with Cervical Dysplasia and Associated Disorders. Int J Environ Res Public Health, 13(3). doi:10.3390/ijerph13030288

Lechner, W. V., Meier, E., Wiener, J. L., Grant, D. M., Gilmore, J., Judah, M. R., . . . *Wagener, T. L. (2015). The comparative efficacy of first- versus second-generation electronic cigarettes in reducing symptoms of nicotine withdrawal. Addiction, 110(5), 862-867. doi:10.1111/add.12870

Wagener, T. L., Tackett, A. P., & Borrelli, B. (2015). Caregivers' interest in using smokeless tobacco products: Novel methods that may reduce children's exposure to secondhand smoke. J Health Psychol. doi:10.1177/1359105315576347

Lechner, W. V., Tackett, A. P., Grant, D. M., Tahirkheli, N. N., Driskill, L. M., & *Wagener, T. L. (2015). Effects of duration of electronic cigarette use. Nicotine Tob Res, 17(2), 180-185. doi:10.1093/ntr/ntu061

Matheny, J. D., Wagener, T. L., & Anderson, M. P. (2015). Tobacco Industry Influences in the Oklahoma Legislature. J Okla State Med Assoc, 108(11), 441-449.  Retrieved from

Meier, E. M., Tackett, A. P., Miller, M. B., Grant, D. M., & *Wagener, T. L. (2015). Which nicotine products are gateways to regular use? First-tried tobacco and current use in college students. Am J Prev Med, 48(1 Suppl 1), S86-93. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2014.09.018

Tackett, A. P., Lechner, W. V., Meier, E., Grant, D. M., Driskill, L. M., Tahirkheli, N. N., & *Wagener, T. L. (2015). Biochemically verified smoking cessation and vaping beliefs among vape store customers. Addiction, 110(5), 868-874. doi:10.1111/add.12878