ASH Daily News for 05 February 2015



HEADLINES

  • Mouse study finds that electronic cigarettes may harm lungs and immune system
  • Scotland: Standing up to Big Tobacco’s display ban claims
  • Oxford: Smoking stubbed out at all community hospitals
  • US: Study finds teen tobacco users likely to use it in multiple forms
  • US: Research finds smokers have strong support for many electronic cigarette policies
  • Arsenal player in new smoking controversy

    Mouse study finds that electronic cigarettes may harm lungs and immune system

    Findings from a new study suggest that electronic cigarettes may generate toxic chemicals similar to those found in tobacco and may harm the lungs and immune system. In the experiments, mice exposed to vapour suffered mild damage to their lungs and became far more susceptible to respiratory infections.

    Scientists also found that vapour contained free radical toxins similar to those found in cigarette smoke and air pollution. Free radicals are highly-reactive molecules that can damage DNA and cell membranes. Electronic cigarettes generated just 1% of the amount of free radicals in tobacco smoke.

    Professor John Britton, director of the UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies said the most important point was that harm to the lungs was less from e-cigarettes than from tobacco. He said:

    “The lung is an exquisitely delicate organ and therefore nobody with any common sense would believe that inhaling heated vapour many times a day would be harmless. What matters here is not a comparison of the effects of e-cigarette vapour compared with nothing, but the effects compared with those of tobacco smoke.”

    “Harm to the lungs will be less with electronic cigarettes than tobacco cigarettes, and any smoker who cannot quit using nicotine, and doesn’t find medicinal products effective, would be well advised to try an electronic cigarette.”

    Full study: Exposure to Electronic Cigarettes Impairs Pulmonary Anti-Bacterial and Anti-Viral Defenses in a Mouse Model, PLOS ONE

    See also:
    E-cigarettes ‘increase the risk of flu and pneumonia’, The Independent
    E-cigarettes are ‘not a safe alternative’, ITV News

    Source: The Guardian, 4th February 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1I7gm2m

    Scotland: Standing up to Big Tobacco’s display ban claims

    In today’s Scotsman, Sheila Duffy, Chief Executive of ASH Scotland rebuts industry claims about the upcoming tobacco display ban in small shops including loss of business to retailers and a potential increase in the illicit trade. Starting in April, the tobacco display ban that already applies in supermarkets will extend to corner shops and other smaller stores. The article also highlights the importance of standard packs and the display ban as complementary measures that will work in tandem to help Scotland reach its Smokefree target.

    Source: The Scotsman, 4th February 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/18Q3WvV

    Oxford: Smoking stubbed out at all community hospitals

    Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust (OHFT) has announced its sites will become smoke-free from March 2nd 2014. Patients and staff visiting the nine community hospitals, the Warneford Hospital and Littlemore Mental Health Centres in Headington will not be allowed to smoke on trust-owned premises.

    The move to make sites smoke-free comes after the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence released guidance in December 2013 that all hospitals should become smoke-free.

    See also:
    Oxford NHS health trust goes smoke-free, BBC

    Source: Oxford Mail, 5th February 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1KgOhDr

    US: Study finds teen tobacco users likely to use it in multiple forms

    A survey of US middle and high school students has found that those who use tobacco or nicotine products are likely to also use more than one type of product.

    About 15% of teens in the study reported smoking cigarettes, cigars, pipes, bidis, hookahs or water pipes, using dissolvable forms of tobacco or vaping electronic cigarettes. Twice as many in that group used two or more of these product types compared to those who said they used only one.

    Full study: Youth Tobacco Product Use in the United States, Pediatrics

    Source: Reuters, 5th February 2015
    Link: http://reut.rs/16EIuJI

    US: Research finds smokers have strong support for many electronic cigarette policies

    New research from Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and Rutgers School of Public Health has found strong support for a number of electronic cigarette policies among smokers.

    Researchers found that 90% of respondents were aware of the devices but 62.5% were not aware they are unregulated. 83.5%, including 80% of current electronic cigarette users, of all respondents thought that electronic cigarettes should be regulated by the US’s Food and Drug Administration. Nearly 87% of all respondents agreed that the devices should carry warning labels about potential risks, and a majority also agreed the devices should have the same legal age of sale as other tobacco products.

    The authors used nationally representative data from an online survey that captured 519 current smokers during a fortnight in April 2014.

    Full study: Smokers’ attitudes and support for e-cigarette policies and regulation in the USA, Tobacco Control

    Source: Medical News Today, 4th February 2015
    Link: http://bit.ly/1v0P0zF

    Arsenal player in new smoking controversy

    Jack Wilshere, the Arsenal midfield player, has been pictured in a nightclub clutching what appears to be a shisha pipe. Wilshere has twice been pictured smoking — in London in 2013 and in Las Vegas after last summer’s World Cup finals — and has admitted that he regrets both incidents, saying that such behaviour was “unacceptable” and claiming that he would learn from his mistakes. Arsène Wenger, the Arsenal manager has made it clear that he will be taking a zero-tolerance approach to smoking among his players.

    Source: The Times, 5th February 2015 (£)
    Link: http://thetim.es/1zCt1TX