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Vape TV Coverage on the Horizon

BBC documentary show to feature vaping at 9:30pm on Sunday 22nd May

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Michael Mosley qualified to practice medicine and was set to become a psychiatrist before taking a left-turn into producing at the BBC. He worked with Robert Winston on a groundbreaking The Human Face television series before moving into presenting his own excellent shows popularizing science. His latest contribution for Horizon, on Sunday 22nd, is titled ‘E-Cigarettes: Miracle or Menace?’

One hundred thousand people die in the UK every year from a smoking-related disease. Across the world a billion individuals spend £500billion a year on cigarettes, half of these people will die as a result of the combusted products in their addiction. The harm reduction opportunity afforded by vaping demanded his attention.

“When the editor of the BBC science series Horizon asked me if I fancied making a programme about e-cigarettes that would involve ‘vaping’ (inhaling nicotine-laden vapour) for a month my initial reaction was: ‘Hell, no’,” he told The Times. “Then I thought about it a bit. I was worried that if I took it up I might get addicted (I’d never smoked), but I was also curious. What would it be like? What effect would it have on me? There has been a huge surge in the use of e-cigarettes over the past couple of years, yet very few studies on the effects of vaping on non-smokers. Time, I decided, to do one, with me as the subject.”

The doctor has been averse to smoking from childhood and his position was confirmed when undertaking his medical training. “One of the first patients I saw was Sarah, a 65-year-old woman who was dying of emphysema, a very common disease of the lungs caused by smoking.”

The Horizon documentary sees Mosley take up “heavy vaping” Heavy vaping? “That's what you do when you inhale vapour from an e-cigarettes,” he attempts by way of explanation – even if the term brings to mind swimming pool posters of things that are banned in the pool.

Among some of the findings Mosley made on his vaping journey is the revelation that nicotine isn’t the evil it’s painted out to be. “To my considerable surprise,” after chatting to experts, “although cigarettes are highly addictive, nicotine alone may not be.” It is something we have covered many times on POTV and welcome that the information is going to be covered on mainstream television. “Research in animals suggests that nicotine is far more addictive when delivered in combination with the other chemicals found in regular cigarettes.”

The episode “E-Cigarettes: Miracle or Menace?” can be viewed on BBC Two at 9.30pm on Sunday 22nd May 2016 or on iPlayer, and comes out at the same time the Tobacco Products Directive comes into force in the UK.

Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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