Research: heated tobacco much less dangerous than cigarettes, however way more so than vapes

Contents hide 1 A research evaluating heated tobacco, private vapes and smoking 2 Methodology 3 Outcomes 3.1 Desk 1 3.2 Desk 2 4 Conclusions A research evaluating heated tobacco, private vapes and smoking After finding …

A research evaluating heated tobacco, private vapes and smoking

After finding out the discount in dangers supplied by the e-cigarette in 2015, three years later, the British Ministry of Well being launched into a research into the merchandise of heated tobacco. After consulting all of the scientific literature obtainable on this topic on the time, it noticed that the outcomes of the varied work needed to be handled with warning, significantly as a result of solely 20 research out of the 843 recognized had adopted the peer evaluation scientific validation course of. Moreover, out of those 20 research, 12 had been funded by the tobacco business itself.

Just a few days in the past, a brand new research (1) was carried out on the topic. Performed by the French Most cancers Institute (INCa) and the French Public Well being Analysis Institute (IResP), its objective was to check the chemical composition and toxicological results of the merchandise of heated tobacco, e-cigarette vapour and the smoke from conventional cigarettes. Will probably be revealed in quantity 401 of the Journal of Hazardous Supplies, in January 2021.


The supplies used for the experiment are as follows:

IQOS, as a heated tobacco product. Within the following graphs, it’s referred to by the acronym HTP, standing for heated tobacco merchandise.

A “Lounge” mannequin of e-cigarette fitted with a 2.6 ohm coil used at an influence of 4.6W, and a field working with a coil of 0.5 ohms at 18W and 30W, the powers advisable by the producer in accordance with the coils used. This gear is that used to review e-cigarettes and is represented by the next letters within the tables setting out the outcomes: Lounge, Mb18W and Mb30W.

There are not any explicit specs for tobacco cigarettes and they’re represented by the letters 3R4F.

To carry out the experiment, the identical smoking machine (Vitrocell® VC1) was used for the several types of merchandise. The profile was set to “intense”, comparable to a puff of 55ml lasting for two seconds each 30 seconds. This profile allows a cigarette to be fully smoked in 10 puffs and an IQOS follow be completed in 12 inhalations. Common vapers additionally participated within the research so as to vape in the identical situations because the smoking machine was to carry out, and confirmed the “absence of dry hits and enough vapour manufacturing”.

Every pattern was repeated 4 instances. Measurements with no pattern had been additionally carried out as advisable by the protocol for one of these research.

The analysis targeting the identification and quantification of the carbonyl compounds and polycyclic fragrant hydrocarbons (PAH). These two teams of molecules are a part of the principle compounds launched throughout the combustion of tobacco and contribute “considerably” to the carcinogenic results of tobacco smoke, because the authors level out.


Desk 1

Desk 1. Carbonyl concentrations (in ng/puff) in e-cig (Lounge, Mb18W or Mb30W), HTP and 3R4F cigarette aerosols. Information representing the imply ± SD of 4 impartial measurements. “∼”: undetectable as < than LOD.


The desk above reveals the portions measured by the researchers for carbonyl compounds.

Because the authors of the research state, “fifteen compounds had been quantified at ranges between 2 and 15 instances greater in cigarette smoke than in HTP aerosols”. Hexanal was the one compound measured at a better degree in HTP emissions (22.1 ng/puff) than in 3R4F tobacco smoke (10.4 ng/puff), and benzaldehyde was generated in nearly equal portions by the HTP and the cigarette.

Carbonyl compounds in decrease portions throughout vaping.

Nonetheless, the researchers additionally famous that all of the carbonyl compounds had been measured in a lot decrease portions within the vapours from the varied e-cigarette check situations as in comparison with tobacco merchandise, apart from m-tolualdehyde and a couple of,5-dimethylbenzaldehyde, which was solely detected within the aerosols from the Modbox gadget, at each high and low energy.

Fewer poisonous compounds in IQOS however greater than within the e-cigarette.

Regarding these compounds, the scientists observe that a puff of IQOS (35 μg/puff) produces 84.7% fewer carbonyl compounds than a puff of cigarette smoke (230 μg/puff). These outcomes corroborate these of earlier research, a few of which had been carried out by the producer of IQOS, the cigarette producer Philip Morris Worldwide (PMI). Nonetheless, the scientists observe that “a number of dangerous carbonyls had been nonetheless measured within the HTP aerosol, comparable to acetaldehyde and formaldehyde, that are carcinogenic compounds”.

98.5% fewer compounds within the vape than in IQOS.

Vaping produced a minimum of 98.5% fewer of those compounds than IQOS. For the researchers, their manufacturing is the results of the thermal breakdown of the glycerol and propylene glycol contained within the e-liquids. Nonetheless, these compounds had been “a number of instances much less” current than within the emissions of IQOS or tobacco cigarettes.

The researchers reached the next conclusion:

“Total, our knowledge due to this fact demonstrates that at regular vaporisation temperatures, the degrees of carbonyl in emissions from e-cigarettes solely represents a small fraction of the degrees inhaled by customers of tobacco merchandise.

Desk 2

Desk 2. PAH concentrations (in pg/puff) in e-cig (Lounge, Mb18W or Mb30W), HTP and 3R4F cigarette aerosols. Information representing the imply ± SD of 4 impartial measurements. “∼”: undetectable as < than LOD.

The desk above considerations the measurement of the emission of 23 PAHs.

Like for carbonyl compounds, the researchers famous that the concentrations of 21 compounds had been “considerably decrease” in IQOS emissions than in cigarette smoke, between 2 and 276 instances decrease, and had been additionally “even decrease” within the aerosols from e-cigarettes.

Fewer PAHs within the vape than in IQOS or smoked tobacco.

To place it merely, IQOS emitted 96.2% fewer PAHs than tobacco cigarettes, and vaping between 64.9 and 78.2% lower than IQOS.

For the researchers, these outcomes regarding vaping are defined, specifically, as a result of these e-liquids are “free from tobacco elements which include the precursors of PAH”.


Of their conclusions, the researchers observe that as a part of efforts to cut back the harm brought on by tobacco, through which people who smoke ought to ideally have the ability to select freely between a wide range of options to smoking, new tobacco merchandise (comparable to HTP) and the e-cigarette appeared to have the potential for a promising new supply.

Nonetheless, they state that it’s “elementary” for people who smoke to know and examine the dangers to well being of those varied rising choices so as to decide which product to go for to quit smoking.

They state that the heated tobacco product studied “releases rather less nicotine and far decrease portions of carbonyl compounds and PAHs than tobacco cigarettes”.

IQOS could possibly be much less dangerous than tobacco cigarettes however significantly extra dangerous than vaping.

Nonetheless, in addition they observe that “HTP emissions nonetheless include carcinogenic compounds, (e.g. formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and benzo[a]pyrene) and the quantities of carbonyls and PAHs are a lot greater than in e-cigarette vapours”. Due to this fact, though the IQOS aerosol presents “decreased cytotoxicity” in relation to cigarette smoke, it stays “greater” than in vaping.

They thus conclude:

“This research contributes to a greater understanding of the emission properties of heated tobacco merchandise and the e-cigarette and their associated toxicological impacts. It gives vital knowledge wanted to judge the dangers, demonstrating that IQOS could possibly be much less dangerous than tobacco cigarettes, however significantly extra dangerous than vaping.

(1) Dusautoir, Romain, et al. “Comparability of the Chemical Composition of Aerosols from Heated Tobacco Merchandise, Digital Cigarettes and Tobacco Cigarettes and Their Poisonous Impacts on the Human Bronchial Epithelial BEAS-2B Cells.” Journal of Hazardous Supplies, Elsevier, 7 July 2020,

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