Monday, July 27, 2015

American Chemical Society Grossly Misrepresents Scientific Study in Order to Demonize E-Cigarettes

The American Chemical Society (ACS) became yet the next organization to work a hatchet job on electronic cigarettes. This time, it was the ACS claiming publicly that based on a new study, e-cigarettes may be as addictive as traditional ones.

Last Wednesday, the ACS issued a press release to accompany the publication of a new article in its journal "Chemical Research in Toxicology." The press release headline warned that "E-cigarettes May Be As Addictive as Traditional Ones."

Responding to this press release, media outlets throughout the world published articles touting the extreme addictive dangers of e-cigarettes. For example, The Daily Mail article headline warned that "E-cigarettes are just as addictive as the real thing." The first sentence of the article read: "E-cigarettes are just as addictive as the real thing, researchers have found." The article goes on to cite the new study published in Chemical Research in Toxicology.

The Rest of the Story

After reading the press release and these articles and headlines, I fully expected to find in the actual study a comparison of the addictiveness of e-cigarettes and cigarettes. But the study did nothing of the sort. In fact, there was absolutely no study of cigarettes at all, and there was no comparison of nicotine levels produced from e-cigarettes compared to regular cigarettes.

In fact, all the study did was to demonstrate a new method for determining the fraction of nicotine in e-liquids and aerosols that is present in the free-base, rather than the protonated form. And it then used that method on several e-liquids and reported that most of the nicotine in these liquids and their aerosols was in the free-base form. This is important because the free-base form is the only form that is readily absorbed into the body.

That's it! That's all the study did. It did not make any comparisons with regular cigarettes. And most importantly, it did not compare the blood nicotine profile over time with e-cigarettes to that with tobacco cigarettes. So there is no way from this study that one can draw any conclusions about the relative addictiveness of e-cigarettes and regular cigarettes.

The truth is that multiple studies have compared the profile of blood nicotine levels over time between vaping and smoking. The result, unequivocally, has been that nicotine delivery is much more efficient with real cigarettes. Most important, real cigarettes, but not most e-cigarettes, deliver nicotine in such a fashion as to create a huge nicotine spike, resulting in what users experience as a "nicotine hit." E-cigarettes generally do not produce such an effect. Thus, the scientific evidence clearly shows that e-cigarettes are not nearly as addictive as tobacco cigarettes.

So how can the American Chemical Society conclude that based on this new study, e-cigarettes are just as addictive as tobacco cigarettes? The answer is: they can't. In other words, they are literally just making it up! And even worse, because the claim is not true, they are disseminating a blatant lie to the public.

This is how low the tactics of e-cigarette opponents have fallen. They now just make it up. They literally make up evidence to support their pre-determined conclusion that e-cigarettes are every bit as terrible as regular cigarettes. In the process, they lie.

I have long since realized that the reason for their need to make things up and tell lies to the public is that they just don't have any solid evidence to rely upon to support their anti-e-cigarette positions. All of the actual scientific evidence at present points to the tremendous benefits of e-cigarettes with only minimal harms. That's not convenient for advocates who have determined in advance to oppose e-cigarettes. So they have to start making things up and telling lies.

Today's is just another example in a long string of similar stories. But now you know the rest of the story behind these hysterical headlines about the extreme health risks of e-cigarettes.

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