Sunday January 26, 2020

Flavoured E-Cigarettes Increase the Risk of Cardiovascular Diseases

"This study clearly shows that e-cigarettes are not a safe alternative to traditional cigarettes," said Joseph Wu, Professor at Stanford University

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E-cigarette additives impair lung function: Study.

The flavours used in electronic cigarettes (e-cigarette), especially cinnamon and menthol, can increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) when inhaled, says a study. The research team investigated the effect of the e-liquids on endothelial cells that line the interior of blood vessels.

The study, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, found that endothelial cells exposed to the e-liquids or to blood collected from e-cigarette users shortly after vaping, exhibit significantly increased levels of molecules implicated in DNA damage and cell death.

The severity of the damage, aspects of which occur even in the absence of nicotine, varies among popular flavours, said the researchers, adding that cinnamon and menthol were found to be particularly harmful. “This study clearly shows that e-cigarettes are not a safe alternative to traditional cigarettes,” said Joseph Wu, Professor at Stanford University.

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A woman smokes an electronic cigarette in London, Aug. 19, 2015. VOA

For the study, the researchers investigated the effect of six different popular e-liquid flavours — fruit, tobacco, sweet tobacco with caramel and vanilla, sweet butterscotch, cinnamon and menthol — with varied nicotine levels on endothelial cells derived from human induced pluripotent stem cells or iPS cells.

ALSO READ: UK Study: E-Cigarettes help Smokers Quit as Much as Stop-Smoking Aids

“When we exposed the cells to six different flavours of e-liquid with varying levels of nicotine, we saw significant damage. The cells were less viable in culture, and they began to exhibit multiple symptoms of dysfunction,” Wu said.

The researchers found that while several of the liquids were moderately toxic to the endothelial cells, the cinnamon- and menthol-flavoured e-liquids significantly decreased the viability of the cells in culture even in the absence of nicotine. “It’s important for e-cigarette users to realise that these chemicals are circulating within their bodies and affecting their vascular health,” Wu said. (IANS)

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Promotional E-Cigarettes Posts on Instagram Outnumber Anti-Vaping Content: Study

E-cigarette popular on Instagram despite anti-vaping content

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Despite "The Real Cost" awareness campaign launched by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2018, nearly one third of American teenagers are estimated to use e-cigarettes. Pixabay

Promotional e-cigarettes posts on popular photo-sharing platform Instagram outnumber anti-vaping content 10,000 to one, according to a new study and health news.

Despite “The Real Cost” awareness campaign launched by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2018, nearly one third of American teenagers are estimated to use e-cigarettes, the researchers said.

The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Communication, highlights the limited impact of the FDA campaign, while also using deep learning – an artificial intelligence method – to better understand the marketing tactics used by vaping companies.

“US public health officials have been calling vaping among youth an epidemic and have been putting a lot of effort into trying to stop this epidemic by introducing #TheRealCost anti-vaping campaign but this stark imbalance in the volume of posts has caused the FDA message to be overwhelmed by marketing from the vaping brands,” said study researcher Julia Vassey from University of California in the US.

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Many teenagers continue to view e-cigarettes as healthier than conventional cigarettes, but vaping is associated with inflammation, reduced immune responses and breathing troubles. Pixabay

Many teenagers continue to view e-cigarettes as healthier than conventional cigarettes, but vaping is associated with inflammation, reduced immune responses and breathing troubles, the study said.

To further understand how vaping is perceived on social media, research team collected 245,894 Instagram posts spanning from before and after the #TheRealCost campaign launch.

The team also conducted interviews with five vaping influencers and eight college-age social media users. “We focused on Instagram because the vaping influencers we interviewed for this study identified Instagram as their most important social media marketing platform,” Vassey explained.

“Based on the results, the FDA anti-vaping campaign is not very popular and we saw Instagram user comments disputing the FDA claims of damaging health effects from nicotine and calling the campaign propaganda,” Vassey added.

Also Read- Drugs That Treat Arthritis in Dogs Can Kill Cancer Cells: Study

In contrast to the FDA’s intentions, the study found that vaping posts received nearly three times more “likes” after the campaign launch. They also found that there were six times as many posts that had greater than 100 likes.

According to the researchers, participants in the focus groups suggested that the anti-vaping campaign promoted scare tactics rather than offering guidance on how to quit vaping. (IANS)