The cigarettes are the first combustible tobacco cigarettes to gain authorization from the FDA as reduced risk products. In an article on The Well, professor of medicine and renowned tobacco harm researcher in tobacco harm reduction research at the University of Louisville, Dr. Brad Rodu highlighted that many experts are questioning how VLN cigarettes managed to meet the FDA’s tough MRTP standard, which requires products to “significantly reduce harm and the risk of tobacco-related disease to individual tobacco users and benefit the health of the population as a whole taking into account both users of tobacco products and persons who do not currently use tobacco products.”
This is because he explained, reducing nicotine does not reduce risk at all, as nicotine does not cause cancer or any of the other diseases associated with smoking. On the other hand, the chemicals which do have not been reduced at all.
Ill-Judged move by the FDA
Similarly in his blog, tobacco harm reduction expert Clive Bates is calling this move the FDA’s “most ill-judged moves to date,” as these products still produce all of the smoke and thousands of toxins of traditional cigarettes but practically none of the nicotine.
“It has done this because these products are reduced in nicotine and, FDA concludes, anyone who is willing to smoke them will experience lower exposures to nicotine. But we have known for a long time that “people smoke for the nicotine but die from the tar” (Mike Russell). This is a product that reduces the nicotine but keeps the tar,” said Bates.
Read Further: NBCChicago