Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, are an expensive habit especially for some vaping aficionados that use premium e-liquids. Now there is a study by chemists at the University of Connecticut that shows e-cigarettes are potentially as harmful as tobacco cigarettes. The findings appear in the journal ACS Sensors.
Researchers from the University of Connecticut found that e-cigarettes loaded with a nicotine-based liquid are potentially as harmful as unfiltered cigarettes when it comes to causing DNA damage. The researchers also found that vapor from non-nicotine e-cigarettes caused as much DNA damage as filtered cigarettes, possibly due to the many chemical additives present in e-cigarette vapors. Cellular mutations caused by DNA damage can lead to cancer.
An article on UConn Today explains: “Electronic cigarettes are battery-powered devices that heat up liquid and turn it into an aerosol vapor that can be inhaled. Using e-cigarettes is also called ‘vaping.’ The contents of e-cigarettes, called e-liquid or e-juice, are usually made up of propylene glycol, glycerine, nicotine, and flavorings such as menthol, cherry, vanilla, or mint.”
With the finding of this new research, there is no longer a consensus that e-cigarettes are much safer than regular cigarettes. Karteek Kadimisetty, a postdoctoral researcher in UConn’s chemistry department and the study’s lead author, said: “From the results of our study, we can conclude that e-cigarettes have as much potential to cause DNA damage as unfiltered regular cigarettes.”
E-cigarettes increasing grows in popularity as a less toxic alternative for people looking to break their habit of smoking tobacco cigarettes. The result of the study is an early warning to people who regularly use e-cigarettes because they think there is no harm. Of course, to save money it’s better to avoid e-cigarettes and smoking altogether.