Taking action on smoking and health
Search period: 27/02 - 26/03
Is the tobacco industry’s human rights makeover growing bolder?
Published: 19/03/2021, Tobacco Control
[Industry Watch]…British American Tobacco (BAT)’s Journey to a Better Tomorrow: Human Rights Report 2020, published on Human Rights Day (10 December 2020), presents another window into the industry’s misuse of human rights framework. It is the first large-scale report from a multinational tobacco company focused solely on human rights. It possibly heralds a growing industry-wide attempt to claim the title of human rights advocates linked with business investments in new products…
‘95% less harmful’? Exploring reactions to quantitative modified risk claims for snus and e-cigarettes
Published: 22/03/2021, Tobacco Control
Conclusions: Quantitative claims suggesting high levels of reduced risk when comparing e-cigarettes or smokeless tobacco/snus relative to cigarettes may be successful in gaining attention and being persuasive for some audiences, particularly, if from more credible sources. However, message developers, users and evaluators should be mindful of message limitations and aim to mitigate unintended consequences.
Characteristics and changes over time of nicotine vaping products used by vapers in the 2016 and 2018 ITC Four Country Smoking and Vaping Surveys
Conclusions: Most vapers continued using the same vaping device and features over 18 months. Differences in NVP types and features were observed between countries, suggesting that differing NVP regulations affect consumer choices regarding the type of vaping device to use.
‘Give ‘em the vape, sell ‘em the pods’: razor-and-blades methods of pod e-cigarette pricing
Published: 25/03/2021, Tobacco Control
[Ad Watch] The razor-and-blades model is a pricing strategy of selling base products, like razor handles, at a loss but making profits on repeated sales of complementary goods, like blades (reflected by the proverb ‘Give ‘em the razor, sell ‘em the blades’, widely misattributed to King C. Gillette).1 This strategy has been used across a myriad of industries, from games consoles to inkjet printers.1 More recently, it has been adopted by pod electronic cigarette (‘e-cigarette’) manufacturers...
Regional comparison of self-reported late pregnancy cigarette smoking to mass spectrometry analysis
Published: 23/03/2021, Nature: Journal of Perinatology
Conclusion: Captured vital birth smoking measures vastly underreport actual primary exposures to nicotine products. Vital birth data also fail to capture secondhand exposures which constitute a significant proportion of the population.
Association of genetic liability to smoking initiation with e-cigarette use in young adults: A cohort study
Published: 18/03/2021, PLos Medicine
Conclusions: Our results indicate that there may be a shared genetic aetiology between smoking and e-cigarette use, and also with socioeconomic position, externalising disorders in childhood, and risky behaviour more generally. This indicates that there may be a common genetic vulnerability to both smoking and e-cigarette use, which may reflect a broad risk-taking phenotype.
Healthcare resources attributable to child tobacco smoke exposure
Published: 23/02/2021, PLos ONE
Conclusions: Tobacco smoke-exposed children had higher urgent care utilization and hospital admissions over 12-months, and higher pediatric ED costs at baseline. Pediatric ED visits, urgent care visits, and hospitalizations may be opportune times for initiating tobacco control interventions, which may result in reductions of preventable acute care visits.
Acute electronic vapour product whole aerosol exposure of 3D human bronchial tissue results in minimal cellular and transcriptomic responses when compared to cigarette smoke
Published: 27/02/2021, Toxicology Research and Application
Conclusion: These data provide evidence that following an acute exposure to EVP aerosol there is significantly less damage to lung cells in culture than the equivalent, nicotine based, dose of cigarette smoke.
Responses to Gradual and Immediate Reduction of Nicotine in Cigarettes in Young vs. Older Adult Smokers
Published: 23/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Research
Conclusions: These results indicate that an immediate reduction in nicotine would result in beneficial effects in both young and older adults. Young adults show less positive subjective effects of smoking following switching to VLNC cigarettes relative to older adults.
Determination of Outdoor Tobacco Smoke Exposure at Outdoor Smoking Facilities
Published: 19/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Research
Conclusions: OTS in open type outdoor smoking facility were detected at 3 m away from the entrance of the smoking facility. Outdoor smoking facility should have buffer zone to reduce OTS exposure of pedestrians. Many smokers were observed outside of the outdoor smoking facility not inside. Management and education of smokers to smoke inside the facility is needed.
Combined Effect of Smoking and Obesity on Coronary Heart Disease Mortality in Male Veterans: A 30-year Cohort Study
Published: 20/03/2021, Biomedical and Environmental Sciences
Results: Analysis results revealed that current smoking (Hazard Ration (HR): 1.552) obesity (HR: 1.625), and the combined effect of the two factors (HR: 2.828) were associated with coronary heart disease mortality.
Smoking Is Correlated With the Prognosis of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Patients: An Observational Study
Published: 03/03/2021, Frontiers Physiology
Results: Smoking was statistically significant comparing non-survivors and survivors of patients with COVID-19 (P = 0.007). Males had higher proportion of smoking than females (91.9% vs. 8.1%, P < 0.001). Compared with the non-smoker, there was significant statistical difference in the incidence of cerebrovascular disease in smoking patients with COVID-19 (9.7% vs. 3.4%, P = 0.017). White blood cell count (6.3 vs. 5.4; P = 0.037), hemoglobin level (139.0 vs. 127.0; P < 0.001), and creatinine level (77.3 vs. 61.0; P < 0.001) were significantly increased in COVID-19 patients who smoked. Moreover, smoking patients showed a worse survival compared with non-smoking patients (Log Rank P = 0.045). After adjustment for age, gender and underlying diseases, patients with smoking still had higher risk of mortality than that of non-smoking patients (hazard ratio[HR] 1.897, 95% confidence interval [CI]1.058-3.402, P = 0.032).
Better air but not for all? Changes in second-hand smoke exposure at workplaces in 29 European countries over 10 years
Published: 24/03/2021, European Journal of Public Health
Results: Between 2005 and 2015, SHS exposure in the European countries declined from around 19.0% to 9.9%. High SHS-exposure was reported by workers with the lowest level of education [11.5%] among high-skilled manual labourers [14.3%] and among those without a standard employment contract [11.2%]. The highest exposure was reported by workers in the food service industry [19.7% ]. Countries with less workplace-related smoking prevention regulations were found to have the highest overall levels of exposure.
Beyond the European Union Tobacco Products Directive: smokers’ and recent quitters’ support for further tobacco control measures (2016–2018)
Published: 16/03/2021, Tobacco Control
Conclusion: There is considerable support among smokers and recent quitters for tobacco control measures that go beyond the current measures implemented. A significant percentage of smokers would support a ban on tobacco products in the future if the government provided assistance to quit smoking. This highlights the importance of implementing measures to increase smoking cessation in conjunction with other policies.
A genome-wide association study of nausea incidence in varenicline-treated cigarette smokers
Published: 13/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Control
Implications: Varenicline-associated nausea reduces adherence and limits cessation success. Previous candidate gene association studies showed genetic factors influence nausea on varenicline. This pilot genome-wide investigation of nausea, the most common side effect associated with varenicline treatment and an importance cause of treatment discontinuation, suggests the potential involvement of common variation in the SLCO3A1 drug transporter gene.
The impact of varying warning color on e-cigarette advertisements: Results from an online experiment among young adults
Conclusions: Yellow warning color increases attention and recall of the warning, but this increase in attention did not translate to differences in downstream effects. Among currently mandated warning variations, the white text on black background warning appears more effective than the black on white. Future research should examine whether differences translate to behavior change.
Depressive Symptoms and Cigarette Smoking in Adolescents and Young Adults: Mediating Role of Friends Smoking
Published: 15/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Control
Conclusion: Friends smoking mediates the association between depressive symptoms and daily/weekly cigarette smoking in young adolescents.
Differences between ethnic groups in self‐reported use of e‐cigarettes and nicotine replacement therapy for cutting down and temporary abstinence: a cross‐sectional population‐level survey in England
Published: 18/03/2021, Addiction
Conclusions: In England, e‐cigarette use by smokers for cutting down and temporary abstinence is less common among Asian and Arab/other ethnicity smokers compared with White smokers. Smokers of mixed/multiple ethnicity are the most likely to be using NRT compared with other ethnic groups for cutting down and temporary abstinence. E‐cigarette use by smokers for cutting down and temporary abstinence has increased over time among White smokers, whereas prevalence in other ethnic groups has remained stable.
A Single-Arm, Open-Label, Pilot, and Feasibility Study of a High Nicotine Strength E-Cigarette Intervention for Smoking Cessation or Reduction for People With Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders Who Smoke Cigarettes
Results: Sixteen (40%) participants quit by the end of 12 weeks. For the whole sample, we observed an overall, sustained 50% reduction in smoking or smoking abstinence in 37/40 (92.5%) of participants and an overall 75% reduction in median cigarettes per day from 25 to six was observed by the end of the 12 weeks (p < .001).
An examination of social and environmental determinants of secondhand smoke exposure among non-smoking adolescents
Published: 12/03/2021, Tobacco Prevention and Cessation
Conclusions: Results emphasize the importance of reducing secondhand smoke exposure by reducing parental smoking and altering exposures within social and home environments. Parental tobacco use and residential setting should be considered when developing interventions to reduce secondhand smoke exposure among non-smoking adolescents.
Nicotine Addiction: Translational Insights from Circuit Neuroscience
Published: 13/03/2021, Pharmacology, Biochemistry and Behaviour
Abstract: [review paper] Using nicotine addiction as an exemplar of a circuit-based substance use disorder, we review fMRI-based observations of a circuit that was first shown to be disrupted among human smokers and was recently replicated in rodent models of nicotine dependence. Next, we discuss circuits that predispose to nicotine dependence severity and their interaction with circuits that change as a result of chronic nicotine administration using a rodent model of dependence.
Substance Use among Exclusive Electronic Cigarette Users and Dual Combustible Cigarette Users: Extending Work to Adult Users
Published: 16/03/2021, Substance Use and Misuse
Conclusions/Importance: Importantly, this work suggests that adults who use both combustible and e-cigarettes may constitute a group more vulnerable to experiencing problematic substance use and more severe e-cigarette dependence than exclusive e-cigarette users.
Disposable E-Cigarette Use among U.S. Youth - An Emerging Public Health Challenge
Published: 16/03/2021, New England Journal of Medicine
Smoking cessation for improving mental health
Published: 10/03/2021, Cochrane Library
Conclusions: Taken together, these data provide evidence that mental health does not worsen as a result of quitting smoking, and very low‐ to moderate‐certainty evidence that smoking cessation is associated with small to moderate improvements in mental health. These improvements are seen in both unselected samples and in subpopulations, including people diagnosed with mental health conditions.
Effects of modified risk tobacco product claims on consumer comprehension and risk perceptions of IQOS
Published: 09/03/2021, Tobacco Control
Introduction: Tobacco industry studies on consumers’ perceptions of modified risk claims (MRCs) often had important omissions (eg, no control group, not investigating whether consumers understand what ‘switching completely’ means). This study examined the effects of IQOS MRCs on risk perceptions and behavioural intentions. Conclusion The FDA should ensure that consumers understand what ‘switching completely’ means in an MRC and recognize that some language features may mislead consumers into believing that a product reduces the risk of diseases not mentioned in an MRC.
Prevalence of heated tobacco product use in Japan: the 2020 JASTIS study
Published: 11/03/2021, Tobacco Control
Results: In 2020, prevalence of current HTP use and cigarette smoking was 10.9% and 25.9% in Japan, respectively. The most commonly used HTP brand was IQOS (5.7%) followed by Ploom TECH/Ploom TECH+ (5.4%) and glo (2.6%). Use of Ploom S, glo sens and Pulze was 1.6%, 0.8% and 0.6%, respectively. One in three current cigarette smokers used HTPs regardless of whether they were interested inquitting smoking.
Patterns of non-cigarette tobacco and nicotine use among current cigarette smokers and recent quitters: Findings from the 2020 ITC Four Country Smoking and Vaping Survey
Published: 08/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Research
Conclusion: Considerable percentages of current cigarette smokers and ex-smokers use non-cigarette nicotine products, and there are unexpectedly high levels of use of other combustible products by those recent ex-smokers of cigarettes which is concerning and has important implications for definitions of smoking cessation.
Effects of Negative Emotion on Abstinence Induced Change in Urge to Vape and Measures of Vaping Dependence
Published: 11/03/2021, Substance Use and Misuse
Conclusions: These preliminary results indicate that psychological constructs underlying vaping dependence are similar to those previously found to be associated with combustible cigarette dependence. Further research examining whether these constructs, namely negative affect and change in urge following abstinence, will be important variables to target for vaping cessation treatments is needed.
Behavioral Smoking Cessation Counseling During Pregnancy: A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis
Published: 10/03/2021, Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Conclusion: Behavioral smoking cessation counseling during pregnancy was associated with fewer adverse neonatal outcomes and was cost effective. Increasing utilization of such interventions and increasing insurance coverage of this care are important initiatives to improve outcomes in this at-risk population.
Predicting smoking and nicotine dependence from the DSM-5 alternative model for personality pathology
Published: 11/03/2021, Personality Disorders
Results: demonstrated that general personality pathology (Criterion A) was not related to smoking status, and there were no reliable associations between traits (Criterion B) and smoking status. However, correlations showed that higher negative affectivity and disinhibition were related to higher levels of nicotine dependence within smokers.
Effects of a brief motivational smoking intervention in non-treatment seeking disadvantaged Black smokers
Published: 11/03/2021, Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology
Conclusions: A brief motivational intervention for Black non-treatment-seeking smokers increased motivation to change smoking and resulted in improvements in NRT knowledge, use, and quit-relevant behaviors. Findings support cultural-targeting and provision of NRT to enhance motivation in Black smokers to reduce cultural and institutional barriers to tobacco cessation.
The effectiveness of using e‐cigarettes for quitting smoking compared to other cessation methods among adults in the United Kingdom
Published: 09/03/2021, Addiction
Conclusions: When used daily, electronic cigarettes appear to facilitate abstinence from smoking when compared with using no help.
Cessation rates from a national collective social network smoking cessation programme: results from the ‘I quit smoking with Facebook on March 21’ Swiss programme
Published: 26/02/2021, Tobacco Control
Background: Programmes for collective smoking cessation, based on the British model Stoptober, are proposed by public health units in many countries. There is a need for data estimating the rate at which participants in these programmes are successful in quitting smoking. Conclusions: Our results support the potential usefulness of large-scale collective cessation campaigns and suggest that such programmes based on social networks are promising areas for future smoking cessation programme activity.
A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial of Text Messaging to Increase Tobacco Treatment Reach in the Emergency Department
Published: 04/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Research
Conclusion: Outreach text messages were found to have moderately high reach among Medicaid smokers. Larger trials are needed to evaluate the impact of such programs on helping low-income smokers quit.
Smoke-free laws and disparities in secondhand smoke exposure among nonsmoking adults in the United States, 1999-2014
Published: 05/03/2021, Nicotine and Tobacco Control
Conclusions: Smoke-free laws may reduce SHS exposure among adult nonsmokers, but may be insufficient to improve disparities in SHS exposure.
Genetically Determined Smoking Behavior and Risk of Nontraumatic Subarachnoid Hemorrhage
Published: 28/02/2021, Stroke
Conclusions: These findings provide evidence for a causal link between smoking and the risk of subarachnoid haemorrhage.
Nicotine, Smoking, Podocytes and Diabetic Nephropathy
Published: January, 2021, Renal Physiology
These novel studies critically implicate nicotine itself as a contributor to diabetic neuropathy progression in cigarette smoking and e-cigarette users.
Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency and Tobacco Smoking: Exploring Risk Factors and Smoking Cessation in a Registry Population
Published: 03/03/2021, Journal of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Conclusion: These results suggest that the genetic risk of COPD in AATD families is compounded by transmission of social risk factors (via parental smoking). Increasing severity of genotype is associated with lower current-smoking rates among ever-smokers.
Single-cell meta-analysis of SARS-CoV-2 entry genes across tissues and demographics
Published: 02/03/2021, Nature Medicine
Conclusion: Cell-type-specific expression patterns of certain genes may contribute to the pathogenesis of COVID-19, this work highlights putative molecular pathways for therapeutic intervention. Further this study found cell-type-specific associations of age, sex and smoking with expression levels of ACE2, TMPRSS2 and CTSL.
Emerging electronic cigarette policies in European member states, Canada, and the United States
Published: February 2021, Health Policy
Conclusion: Strategies to achieve public health goals related to ECIGs vary widely, with federalism playing an important role in policy innovation, offering opportunities to evaluate their effectiveness and inform future regulations.
A collection of article on ‘Quitlines’ in the March edition of the American Journal of Preventative Medicine:
-The Role of Quitlines in Tobacco Cessation: An Introduction – Editorial
-Tobacco Cessation Quitlines: An Evolving Mainstay for an Enduring Cessation Support Infrastructure - Editorial
-Using Digital Technologies to Reach Tobacco Users Who Want to Quit: Evidence From the National Cancer Institute's Smokefree.gov Initiative. Conclusions: Smokefree.gov Initiative utilization data show that people take advantage of the full range of technology tools and options offered as part of the Smokefree.gov Initiative's multiplatform intervention. The Smokefree.gov Initiative experience suggests that offering different, complementary technology options to meet the needs and preferences of smokers has the potential to meaningfully expand the reach of cessation treatment.
-Tobacco Smoking Cessation and Quitline Use Among Adults Aged ≥15 Years in 31 Countries: Findings From the Global Adult Tobacco Survey. Conclusions: In the assessed countries, the majority of those who currently smoked tobacco and made a quit attempt did so without assistance; very few reported using quitlines, partly because of the lack of quitlines in some countries. In resource-limited settings, quitlines can play a greater role in helping people quit smoking as part of a comprehensive approach.
Evaluating level of adherence to nicotine replacement therapy and its impact on smoking cessation: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Published: 04/03/2021, Archives of Public Health
Conclusions: This review highlights a low level of adherence to NRT among participants of population-based studies and pregnant women as compared to clinical trials. Moreover, the review illustrated a strong association between adherence and successful smoking cessation. Hence, it is recommended to implement and assess large scale interventions to improve adherence. Health programs and policies are recommended to integrate the issue of adherence to NRT as a core component of smoking cessation interventions.
Electronic cigarettes in standard smoking cessation treatment by tobacco counselors in Flanders: E-cigarette users show similar if not higher quit rates as those using commonly recommended smoking cessation aids.
Published: 04/03/2021, Harm Reduction Journal
Conclusions: People who smoke and choose e-cigarettes in the context of smoking cessation treatment by tobacco counselors show similar if not higher smoking cessation rates compared to those choosing other evidence-based (or no) smoking cessation aids.
Assessing the links between human rights and global tobacco control through statements made on global fora
Published: 04/03/2021, BMC Public Health
Conclusion: Globally, HR is just emerging as an influence in global health governance for tobacco discussions. Within the Western Pacific Region however tobacco control is seen by some authorities as a HR issue. Similarly, to HR experts, tobacco control is becoming important to how Pacific Island Countries fulfill their treaty obligations, suggesting tobacco control advocates might explore these mechanisms to further influence the development of strong tobacco control measures to implement the WHO FCTC.
Multi-level drivers of tobacco use and purchasing behaviors during COVID-19 "lockdown": A qualitative study in the United States
Published: 01/03/2021, International Journal on Drug Policy
Conclusion: To mitigate ways that the COVID-19 pandemic may exacerbate an existing public health crisis, multi-level policy strategies, such as expanded virtual cessation services and implementation and enforcement of smoke-free home rules, can better support population health during this critical period. Policies that facilitate access to lower risk products can help minimize harm among those who cannot or do not want to quit smoking.
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