Flavoured e-cig­a­rettes can kill lung cells

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Trends - Tim Wy­att

Vapour from e-cig­a­rettes can kill off cells which line hu­man air­ways, new re­search has sug­gested. A study by sci­en­tists at the Univer­sity of Ade­laide in Aus­tralia found fumes from three types of ap­ple-flavoured va­p­ing liq­uid could de­stroy bronchial ep­ithe­lial cells. These line the res­pi­ra­tory sys­tem and are im­por­tant for keep­ing the lungs and air­ways clean.

The re­searchers also dis­cov­ered the vapour could in­ter­fere with the im­mune sys­tem, in par­tic­u­lar by dis­rupt­ing macrophage­s: white blood cells which di­gest and store un­healthy cells and for­eign de­bris. Va­p­ing has been un­der in­tense scru­tiny in re­cent months af­ter hun­dreds of peo­ple be­came un­well and sev­eral died in the US from lung dis­eases which ap­pear to be linked to e-cig­a­rette use.

Re­searchers said their find­ings show tougher gov­ern­ment reg­u­la­tion of va­p­ing was now re­quired. “There are no reg­u­la­tions on the man­u­fac­tur­ing of e-liq­uids. There are also no re­quire­ments to list the in­gre­di­ents or their quan­ti­ties,” said Mi­randa Ween, one of the sci­en­tists be­hind the study.

E-cig­a­rettes and the vapour they pro­duce must no longer be con­sid­ered to be es­sen­tially harm­less al­ter­na­tives to tra­di­tional cig­a­rettes, the study’s au­thors con­cluded. The Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Preven­tion said they had not yet been able to iden­tify which chem­i­cals or sub­stances might have trig­gered the va­p­ing deaths.

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