I Hate These Meeces To Pieces

Posted 11th February 2015 by Dave Cross
A team from John Hopkins University, Liverpool, have researched the effect of vapour on humans.... but there are more errors than just a spelling mistake in the study titled “Exposure to Electronic Cigarettes Impairs Pulmonary Anti-Bacterial and Anti-Viral Defenses in a Mouse Model”.

The research lays out the teams intentions: “Electronic cigarettes have experienced sharp increases in popularity over the past five years due to many factors, including aggressive marketing, increased restrictions on conventional cigarettes, and a perception that E-cigs are healthy alternatives to cigarettes. Despite this perception, studies on health effects in humans are extremely limited and in vivo animal models have not been generated.”

Readers will note that the loaded term aggressive has been used to describe the marketing of vaping devices and liquids. The team also make the flawed claim that people attribute the term healthy to ecigs – no respected vendor, manufacturer or scientist has made this claim; vaping is widely accepted to be considerable safer, by orders of magnitude, compared to smoking.

In the cool cats from John Hopkins’ abstract, they attempt to lend credence to thoroughly debunked positions and research when they state: “Based on current information, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the European Respiratory Society have indicated that electronic cigarettes are not considered a safe alternative to smoking. Furthermore, recent studies indicate that E-cigs may not be an effective therapy for smoking cessation.”

At the end of the research they boldly state: “E-cig exposure results in immunomodulatory effects that are similar to those observed after exposure to cigarette smoke.” It’s true; the results bear out the conclusion. But, what if the entire experiment was flawed? It’s entirely possible seeing as they laughably claim: “popularity of E-cigs among teenagers is rapidly rising” – which flies in the face of the monthly & annual research carried out by Professor Robert West et al.

Tom Pruen, Chief scientific officer for ECITA, has torn into the risibly poor study.

“Sadly, there are two flaws in their methodology that make this result largely meaningless for human exposure. The first of these appears to be intentional: they exposed the mice to the same amount of ecig vapour as they expected an adult to use. This was done by exposing the mice (in a 2 litre chamber) to one, two second, puff every 10 seconds for 90 minutes, twice a day. This greatly exceeds the values derived from user surveys, which gives a spread of 80 to 200 puffs/day, since their experiment protocol works out to 1080 puffs/day.”

“They also exposed the mice, which would have weighed about 40g each, to the same amount of vapour as that used by an adult consumer (of likely 70Kg -80Kg in weight) – a relative increase in exposure of 2000 times. It was also a whole body exposure.”

Tom points out that as well as the aforementioned flaws the team failed to account for dry hits – but despite all of this the mice demonstrated a marked lack of acute toxicity.

“The upshot of this is that, as well as exposing the mice to the same dose as a human (a scale increase of about 2000 times), they also exposed them to significant amounts of thermal degradation products generated by empty cartomisers. Despite this, many of the mice survived to be infected with respiratory illnesses. It is not surprising that the poor mice did not fare very well at fighting off these infections after such abuse.”


 Dave Cross
Article by Dave Cross
Freelance writer, physicist, karateka, dog walker