PATH Study Data Access

Data from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study are available for use by researchers wanting to explore their own study questions. This includes both publicly available files that can be downloaded and analyzed on any computer and restricted-access files that researchers can apply to access on a secure server. Data and documentation (questionnaires, codebooks) related to the PATH Study are available at the study website at the National Addiction & HIV Data Archive Program (NAHDAP), including instructions for access to restricted- and public-use files. Available file types include Questionnaire Public-use Files (PUFs)Questionnaire Restricted-use Files (RUFs)Biomarker Restricted-use Files (BRUFs), State Identifier Restricted-use Files (SIRUFs), Tobacco Universal Product Code (TUPCRUF) Data, Special Collection Public-use Files (SCPUFs), and Special Collection Restricted-use Files (SCRUFs). Data from new waves are released as they become available.

New PATH Study Data Files Available from Wave 6

The NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and The FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) announce the availability of new restricted-use biomarker data files from Waves 4 (W4) and 5 (W5) of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study. Youth variables included in the Wave 6 Public Use File (PUF) were also updated. The latest additions to the PATH Study’s Biomarker Restricted Use File (BRUF) includes data from the W4 Biomarker Core, a cohort of participants who were youth as of W4 and provided biospecimens in W4 and Wave 5 (W5), and includes updated adult data from the Wave 1 (W1) Biomarker Core.

The data release includes urine panel assay files and associated weights, which are listed below:
W4: Oxidative Stress (F2PG2a) 

W4 and W5: Tobacco Specific Nitrosamines (TSNA)
W4 and W5: Volatile Organic Compounds Metabolites (VOCM)
W4: Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH)
W5: Oxidative Stress (F2PG2a)

Qualified researchers may apply for access through the PATH Study BRUF webpage. In addition, the PATH Study Restricted Use Master Linkage File has been updated to reflect the new BRUF data files. Data and documentation for the Public Use Files are also updated and available.

The Biospecimen Access Program webpage provides information on how to access the urine, serum, plasma, and genomic DNA (gDNA) collected from adult PATH Study participants during Wave 1 (2013 – 2014) and urine collected during Wave 2 (2014 – 2015), Wave 3 (2015-2016), Wave 4 (2016-2018), and Wave 5 (2018-2019). 

The PATH Study is a household-based, nationally representative, longitudinal cohort study of youth (12-17 years old) and adults in the United States. The study was launched in 2011 to inform FDA’s regulatory activities under the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act.  For questions regarding accessing the PATH Study, please send them to Questions about PATH Study data's collection, content, weighting, documentation, or structure may be submitted to (not to be used for questions about statistical analysis or analytic guidance). Additionally, there is a PATH Study FAQs for Researchers webpage. 

The first wave of data collection occurred in 2013 and completed its sixth wave in late 2021. Below is a table of data collection waves.

Wave #Begin DateEnd DateRestricted-Use File Data Release DatePublic-Use File Data Release Date
Wave 1September 2013December 2014December 2015August 2016
Wave 2October 2014October 2015March 2017June 2017
Wave 3October 2015October 2016May 2018September 2018
Wave 4December 2016January 2018May 2019November 2019
Wave 4.5 (Special collection)December 2017December 2018March 2020September 2020
Wave 5December 2018November 2019February 2021September 2021
Wave 5.5 (Special Collection)December 2019December 2020April 2022October 2022
Adult Telephone Survey 2020 (Special Collection)September 2020December 2020April 2022October 2022
Wave 6March 2021November 2021March 2023September 2023
Wave 7January 2022April 2023Spring 2024*Fall 2024*
Wave 7.5  (Special Collection)April 2023December 2023Winter 2024*Summer 2025*

*Projected dates may change.