E-Cigarette Researchers Release New Public Health Study

ijerph-logoKonstantinos Farsalinos, one of the most formidable researchers in the e-cigarette space, along with Gene Gillman, Konstantinos Poulas and Vassilis Voudris, have completed a new research study, “Tobacco-Specific Nitrosamines in Electronic Cigarettes: Comparison Between Liquid and Aerosol Levels.” Findings can be found in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.

The study’s introduction begins by stating that electronic cigarettes (EC) are considered as less harmful alternatives to smoking.

“Most studies have focused on examining EC liquid composition, showing that the levels of toxic chemicals present in EC liquids are by far lower than in tobacco cigarette [1]. Tobacco-specific nitrosamines (TSNAs), which are very potent carcinogenic chemicals [3,4], are present in minute amounts in EC liquids, usually at levels comparable to pharmaceutical nicotine products [5,6,7]. TSNAs are derived from the tobacco leaves. They are naturally occurring compounds found in cured tobacco. They are not present in the green tobacco leaves but are formed during the curing process by nitrosation of amines. There is some controversy as to whether combustion leads to substantial TSNAs formation [8,9,10], however, it seems likely that most TSNAs found in mainstream smoke come from the compounds present in cured tobacco leaves while only a small fraction is derived from pyrolytic synthesis [11]. The levels emitted to tobacco cigarette smoke directly correlate with the levels present in the tobacco leaves, but the absolute levels are usually considerably lower [11]. Studies evaluating TSNAs levels in EC aerosol are scarce. Despite finding low levels in the aerosol [12,13], there is little information as to whether the evaporation process results in additional TSNAs production. Concerns have been expressed in the literature that the heat of evaporation may result in higher levels of TSNAs emitted to the aerosol compared to those present in the liquid [14]. The true exposure of consumers (vapers) to TSNAs (through inhalation of the aerosol) relative to the levels present in the liquids has not been adequately assessed. The purpose of this study was to examine whether TSNAs levels in the EC aerosol exceed the levels present in the liquids.”

The research found that exposure of EC users to TSNAs can be accurately assessed based on the levels present in the liquid, without the need to analyze the aerosol.

For the full report, visit http://www.mdpi.com/1660-4601/12/8/9046/htm.


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