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I had the chance to interview the researcher in his office of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo and to ask him a few questions, at the occasion of the release of his last publication on cherry flavors, especially on their potential threat.

The specialist who is the first, leading or co-author of more than 40 publications around nicotine, tobacco and the e-cigarette explains that the study was just carried on one compound, benzaldehyde. He thinks that the targetted compound is present is most of the blends but his concentration is the highest in cherry-flavored e-liquids.

Side effects?

It may happen that one feels some side effects after using a specific flavors: caughing, irritations. It is important, precognizes the specialist, to try different blends. Little is known on side effects of flavors and the power of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute is to investigate these effects on human respiratory cells extracted from the respiratory tract and exposed to different compounds. Such laboratory tests help sciemtists understanding the action mechanisms of chemicals like the benzaldehyde, on humans.

The main risk with the electronic cigarette is the repeated exposure over years to these compounds. And this is also a problem since even less is known with regard to long-term exposure.

How do manufacturers communicate?

In a second part of the video, Amandine Billaud, export manager  for the French manufacturer of e-liquids “Vincent dans les Vapes” recalls what the study shows and blames the media for their distorted discourse on vaping.

The study shows that some compounds contained in e-liquids may be irritant. No question, here, of toxicity. Efforts are being made by the Europeans but also in North America to guarantee an reliable level of confidence on e-liquids. Things are not setting up as fast as the market grows but manufacturers will have to face major challenges in 2016 in Europe and in the US.

“The French standards that have been released in 2015 help manufacturer to be careful with what they do. Hopefully it will be the same in the US soon“, she adds.


 Who is Marciej Goniewicz?

Marciej Goniewicz joined the staff of Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) in 2013 and was appointed Assistant Member of the Department of Health Behavior, Division of Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences. The Polish researcher who earned a Pharm.D. degree (2002) and a Ph.D. in Toxicology and Pharmacology (2007) from the Medical University of Silesia, Poland, completed his postdoctoral fellowships in Clinical Pharmacology and Tobacco Control at the University of California San Francisco and in Smoking Cessation Treatment in Queen Mary University of London, UK.

Dr. Goniewicz’s current research is focused on new nicotine-containing products and alternative forms of tobacco. He examines safety and efficacy of electronic nicotine delivery devices, commonly called e-cigarettes. These studies include the laboratory evaluation of the products, pharmacological and toxicological assessment, surveys among their users, and their potential application in harm reduction and smoking cessation. He also evaluates implementation of new tobacco control laws and role of community pharmacists in smoking cessation.