DRI Researchers Find E-Cigs Leave Cancer-Causing Chemicals In Lungs

Sep 14, 2018

The Food and Drug Administration is considering a plan that would curb the use of electronic-cigarettes among teenagers. As Reno Public Radio’s Anh Gray reports, a group of Nevada researchers found that a significant amount of cancer-causing chemicals remain in the lungs from vaping.

Some research suggests that fewer toxic compounds are inhaled from e-cigarettes compared to traditional smoking, but a team of researchers from the Desert Research Institute, or DRI, and the University of Nevada, Reno recently published a pilot study that found vaping isn’t without adverse health effects.

DRI Associate Research Professor of Atmospheric Science Vera Samburova said significant amounts of cancer-causing chemicals like formaldehyde, aren’t detected in the liquids contained in devices. The compounds are produced during the heating process. “We actually detect them only in the vapors, which are produced by electronic cigarette devices,” Samburova explained. "They're actually formed during the vaping."

The F.D.A. said the brains of adolescents, which continue to develop through the age of 26, are especially vulnerable to addiction.

The agency is putting e-cigarette makers on notice. A handful of the largest manufacturers have 60 days to prove they are not targeting minors.