Even without nicotine, e-cigarettes can still damage lungs

UNTV News   •   February 12, 2018   •   8779

FILE PHOTO: Jerred Marsh (R) samples flavored vape juice from Nancy Reyes at the Vape Summit 3 in Las Vegas, Nevada May 2, 2015. REUTERS/David Becker/File Photo

(Reuters Health) – E-cigarette liquids sweetened with flavorings like vanilla and cinnamon may harm the lungs even when they don’t contain nicotine, a U.S. study suggests.

Researchers examined what happened to monocytes, a type of white blood cell, upon exposure to flavoring chemicals used in popular e-cigarette liquids. None of the liquids contained nicotine, but the flavoring chemicals still appeared to increase biomarkers for inflammation and tissue damage, and many of them also caused cells to die.

Over time, this type of cell damage can lead to wide range of lung problems including fibrosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, and asthma, said senior study author Irfan Rahman, an environmental health researcher at the University of Rochester Medical Center in upstate New York.

“Nicotine-free e-liquids have generally been considered safe; however, the impact of flavoring chemicals, especially on immune cells, has not been widely researched,” Rahman said by email. “This study shows that even though flavoring compounds are considered safe for ingestion, it is not safe for inhalation.”

Big U.S. tobacco companies are all developing e-cigarettes. The battery-powered gadgets feature a glowing tip and a heating element that turns liquid nicotine and flavorings into a cloud of vapor that users inhale.

Even when e-liquids don’t contain nicotine, the lungs are still exposed to flavoring chemicals when the e-liquids are heated and the vapors are inhaled. Since the flavoring chemicals are considered safe to eat, e-cigarettes are often promoted as a alternative to traditional cigarettes, researchers note in Frontiers in Physiology.

When researchers exposed human lung cells to e-liquids in the laboratory, the cells increased their output of inflammation-related chemicals that can eventually lead to damage in the lungs.

Exposing cells to mixtures containing a variety of flavors appeared to cause a worse reaction than using a single flavor, the study found.

Among the single flavors, cinnamon and vanilla appeared the most toxic to the lung cells.

One limitation of the study is that the experiment didn’t involve people actually vaping and breathing in the e-liquids, the authors note. The study also doesn’t offer a complete picture of e-cigarette safety or address the potential for health problems to emerge after long-term use.

While more research is needed to better understand what happens to lung cells when people smoke e-cigarettes, the results suggest that e-liquids should be regulated and clearly labeled to list the mix of flavors used, the researchers conclude.

“It is expected that more complex mixtures or exposure at higher doses will have more adverse effects on isolated cells in the laboratory,” said Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos, a researcher at the University of Patras-Greece and the National School of Public Health-Greece who wasn’t involved in the study.

While evidence to date suggests that e-cigarettes may be less harmful than smoking traditional cigarettes, it still make sense for users to pay attention to what’s in the e-liquids they’re inhaling, Farsalinos said by email.

“Whether pre-mixed or do-it-yourself liquids, it is the amount of flavorings that would determine the level of potential adverse effects,” Farsalinos added. “I expect simpler mixtures to be safer compared to more complex blends.”

SOURCE: bit.ly/2Bkvc7p Frontiers in Physiology, online January 11, 2018.

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Police to still arrest people who vape in public —NCRPO

Maris Federez   •   December 10, 2019

MANILA, Philippines— The National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) will still continue arresting people who vape in public places.

NCRPO acting director PBGen. Debold Sinas said that around 98 vapes had been confiscated and 98 had also been arrested.

He added that 812 vape stores have voluntarily closed down and 297 were urged by the NCRPO to stop selling.

Sinas also welcomed the report that the ban on the importation of vapes is now in effect, although he admitted that they have not received any directive on the matter.

“Wala pa kaming natanggap na directive so yung campaign namin ay tuloy tuloy lang po yun. Napansin mo medyo humina na nga ang nahuhuli eh. At tsaka kumukonti na rin kasi parang nasanay na rin. So sana tuloy tuloy na ito,” Sinas said.(from the report of Lea Ylagan) /mbmf

MMDA supports ban on vape

Aileen Cerrudo   •   November 22, 2019

The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) has announced their support for President Rodrigo Duterte’s ban on vaping in public places.

MMDA Chairman Danilo Lim encourages the public to adhere to the President’s order. He also said that the said order aims to protect the public’s health.

“I agree with the statement of the President that vaping poses harmful effects to human health. Hence, I support the regulation of vaping for the sake of the general public,” he said.

Meanwhile, Director of the MMDA Health and Environmental Protection Office (HEPO) Dr. Loida Alzona said the MMDA’s environmental enforcers will strictly monitor the selling, advertising and promotion of cigarettes and other tobacco products within 100-meter perimeter of schools in Metro Manila.

“We will help make sure that no vape shops are established within 100-perimeter of public and private schools in the metropolis,” she said.—AAC

PNP to enforce arrest-and-release system for individuals vaping in public

Aileen Cerrudo   •   November 21, 2019

The Philippine National Police (PNP) will implement an arrest-and-release system for individuals caught vaping in public.

PNP officer-in-charge Lt. Gen. Archie Gamboa clarified that they will not detain apprehended vapers while the new executive order is still pending in Malacañang.

“We can arrest but we cannot punish, arrest in not punishment,” he said.

Arrested individuals, according to Gamboa, will be recorded in the police blotter and will be released.

“If you include vape in that EO, it’s actually an expansion of the definition of smoking, kaya sabi pwede i-implement agad (that’s why it can be implemented immediately). However, in the absence of publication, which is required for any state to impose punitive action, hence, another EO is required for it to be published and then tsaka magkaroon ng (there will be) punishment,” he added.

The PNP OIC also assured there will be no abuse in the implementation of the arrest-and-release system.

Gamboa released a memorandum on Wednesday (November 20) declaring all PNP camp and office a ‘no vape zone’.

He also directed police officers to arrest individuals caught vaping in public.

This was after the directive of President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday (November 19) to ban the importation and use of vaping.—AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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