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September, 2016:

Tobacco use and second-hand smoke exposure in young adolescents aged 12–15 years

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Tonight with Tim Modise | A Billion Lives

Tobacco addiction has led to the deaths of millions around the world with South Africa is joining the cause to have smoking banned.

According to a new documentary, e-cigarettes and vaporizers are a solution to kicking addiction but they aren’t made accessible & this info is kept secret by large corporations because they st and to lose billions.

Tim Modise talks to Aaron Biebert, ‘A Billion Lives’ Film Director & Medical Expert, Dr Delon Human.

Philip Morris Boosts Cigarette Alternative Investments

The tobacco firm will expand sales of these products to more countries as well as increase its development of new products.

The head of Philip Morris International has his eyes on alternatives to cigarettes as a good investment strategy for his company. CEO Andre Calantzopoulos said that the company will shell out an additional $100 million in 2016 to develop next-generation tobacco products, Bloomberg reports.

“We are more confident than ever that these products have the potential to fundamentally transform our business,” he said. One product in particular has received more funding: the iQOS heat-not-burn tobacco device. Philip Morris forecasts the product will hit shelves in 20 markets by the end of 2016.

IQOS consists of a rechargeable electronic device that heats tubes of tobacco. These “HeatSticks” look like half a cigarette. According to the company, iQOS has already gained more than a million smokers in Italian and Japanese test markets. “We are still in very, very early days,” Calantzopoulos said.

Overall, Philip Morris predicts that worldwide, cigarette smoking declines between 2% and 2.5% annually. Analysts are closely watching the tobacco industry as competitors race to come up with the next big thing in tobacco products.

“It’s not clear which product or which category will ultimately win,” said Rupert Wilson, an industry analyst. “Someone will eventually bring a product out that’s a quantum leap.”

Schizophrenia linked to increased intensity of tobacco smoking, low smoking cessation rates: Study

Schizophrenia is linked to an increased intensity of tobacco smoking, with low smoking cessation rates among schizophrenic patients, compared to the general population. Researcher and lead author of the study Stéphane Potvin said, “Smoking is a real problem for people with schizophrenia. Their health and life expectancy are often undermined by this addiction, whose brain mechanisms were until now largely unknown.”

The researchers observed greater neuronal activation in schizophrenic smokers, compared to healthy controls, when presented images of cigarettes. Schizophrenic smokers also had more depressive symptoms, compared to the control group.

Potvin added, “These observations suggest that smoking has a greater rewarding effect in schizophrenia smokers. This corroborates the hypothesis already formulated of their increased vulnerability to this addiction, but also demonstrates the great difficulty for them when it comes to quitting smoking.”

Smoking prevalence is high among schizophrenics, and cessation rates are low. This puts schizophrenics at a higher risk for heart disease and other complications related to smoking. Potvin concluded, “It is necessary to explore avenues that will help people in their efforts to free themselves from smoking. That is why we want to continue our research into whether this activation of the ventro-medial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC) is caused by the disease itself or by the effects of antipsychotics.”

Schizophrenia patients use nicotine to self-medicate symptoms and cognitive impairment associated with the disease. The study found that nicotine receptors are lower in schizophrenic patients than in healthy controls. Even though smoking is known to increase these receptors in all persons, this reaction was blunted in schizophrenic patients.

Instead, in schizophrenics, the increase in the levels of nicotine receptors was associated with lower levels of social withdrawal, blunted emotional and motivational responses, and better cognitive function.

Nicotine imitates acetylcholine, a natural chemical messenger that stimulates nicotine receptors in the brain. In the study, the researchers compared the levels of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (ß2*-nAChRs) in schizophrenia patients (both smokers and non-smokers) and healthy controls.

First author Dr. Irina Esterlis explained, “We found a blunted effect of tobacco smoking on the ß2*-nAChR system in individuals with schizophrenia. Furthermore, we found that lower receptor availability of ß2*-nAChRs in smokers with schizophrenia is associated with worse negative symptoms and worse performance on tests of executive function.”

“The data seem to suggest that smoking might produce some clinical benefits for some patients by increasing the availability of receptor targets for nicotine in the brain. This finding adds to evidence that brain nicotine-related signaling might play a role for new medications developed to treat schizophrenia,” added Dr. John Krystal, editor of Biological Psychiatry.

Nicotine given independently from tobacco may ward off Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease

Nicotine given independently from tobacco may help ward off Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease. It is a common knowledge that tobacco and tobacco products are bad for your health, but new research findings suggest that nicotine alone may offer protective properties to the brain.

The researchers added nicotine to the drinking water of the study animals. There were three different groups that received three different concentrations of nicotine similar to those received by occasional, low, and medium smokers.

There was also a control group that did not receive any nicotine.

The two groups that received low and medium dosages did not show any levels of the drug in their system. Nor did they experience any changes in their eating habits, body weight, or number of receptors in the brain where nicotine acts.

The group that had the highest dosage of nicotine ate less, gained less weight, and had more receptors, which means the drug gets into the brain and effect behavioral changes.

Lead researcher Ursula Winzer-Serhan said, “Some people say that nicotine decreases anxiety, which is why people smoke, but others say it increases anxiety. The last thing you would want in a drug that is given chronically would be a negative change in behavior. Luckily, we didn’t find any evidence of anxiety: Only two measures showed any effect even with high levels of nicotine, and if anything, nicotine made animal models less anxious.”

“I want to make it very clear that we’re not encouraging people to smoke. Even if these weren’t very preliminary results, smoking results in so many health problems that any possible benefit of the nicotine would be more than cancelled out. However, smoking is only one possible route of administration of the drug, and our work shows that we shouldn’t write off nicotine completely,” Winzer-Serhan cautioned.

Eating foods that contain small amounts of nicotine, like peppers and tomatoes, may reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease. Previous studies have shown that smoking and other tobacco plants reduced the risk of Parkinson’s disease, but whether nicotine in other components could offer similar benefits has not been yet confirmed.

The researchers recruited 490 newly diagnosed Parkinson’s disease patients and another 644 persons without neurological disease. Questionnaires were used to assess participants’ lifetime diets and tobacco use.

Vegetable consumption did not affect the risk of Parkinson’s disease, but the increased consumption of edible Solanaceae (a plant family which includes some edible sources of nicotine) was associated with a reduction in Parkinson’s disease risk. The best results were associated with pepper consumption.

Researcher Dr. Searles Nielsen concluded, “Our study is the first to investigate dietary nicotine and risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. Similar to the many studies that indicate tobacco use might reduce risk of Parkinson’s, our findings also suggest a protective effect from nicotine, or perhaps a similar but less toxic chemical in peppers and tobacco.”

Tobacco industry’s CSR activities still an issue in PH despite improvement in interference index

While the Philippines has made significant improvement to control tobacco industry interference two years after it had ranked high among Southeast Asian countries that reported industry influence, much is still needed to be done to protect the government from unnecessary interaction with cigarette makers.

Citing results of the third Tobacco Industry Interference Index organized by the Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA), New Vois Association of the Philippines (NVAP) President Emer Rojas said based on the report, the tobacco industry still finds ways to wield influence in government affairs in many countries through corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities.

The report, the world’s first ever assessment of tobacco interference in government, and the third one by SEATCA since 2014, reveals that the industry invests huge money on CSR activities to circumvent laws regulating their business and gain access to public officials in charge of implementing tobacco control policies.

“We have a Civil Service Commission guideline that prohibits unnecessary interaction between government and the tobacco industry. Despite that, the industry is able to continue to exercise some influence in government affairs through fake CSR using legitimate business organizations and foundations that lend support to local government units,” Rojas said.

Rojas was referring to the CSC’s Joint Memorandum Circular 2010-01, a code of conduct banning all government officials from receiving or supporting tobacco industry-related CSR activities.

SEATCA noted that while more than 200 national and local government units, including educational institutions and government controlled corporations, have supported the memorandum and drastically reduced unnecessary interaction with the tobacco industry, it still was able to contribute to LGUs through the American Chamber of Commerce which fronts for Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco Corporation (PMFTC) and Mighty Corporation’s Wong Chu King Foundation (WCKF).

SEATCA revealed that as ASEAN countries implement stricter bans on tobacco advertising and promotion, cigarette giants such as Philip Morris International have recently increased their CSR spending in the region.

“Philip Morris International (PMI), for example, increased its spending in three countries (i.e., Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand) in the ASEAN region from USD 1.5 million in 2009 to USD 2.5 million in 2015,” the report said.

“PMI spends the lion’s share of its CSR handouts in Indonesia and the Philippines, about USD 6 million and USD 1.8 million respectively, which are also its largest cigarette markets among ASEAN countries,” added the report.

Rojas said the tobacco industry should be banned from using their “fake” CSR activities because they run counter against the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control guidelines signed by member countries including the Philippines.

“We should encourage legitimate CSR activities and ban fake CSR of the tobacco companies. They need not give us assistance coming from the profits derived from selling products that kill people,” Rojas said.(NVAP)

3 Key Markets for Philip Morris International

The tobacco company does business around the world, but some of its markets are more important than others.

Cigarette maker Philip Morris International (NYSE:PM) has built a truly global business, serving customers on six continents. Yet some of the nations in which Philip Morris sells its cigarettes and other tobacco products are more important to the company’s overall success than others, and investors need to watch those markets particularly closely to make sure that they catch any potential changes that could help or hurt the company. Below, we’ll look at three key markets for Philip Morris to see how they’ve fared recently.

1. Indonesia

Indonesia has one of the largest overall cigarette markets of any country that Philip Morris serves, and unlike many areas of the world, that market is growing. In the second quarter of 2016, Philip Morris estimated the size of the total cigarette market at 83.6 billion units, up 5 billion in just the past year. For its part, Philip Morris shipped more than 28.5 billion units to Indonesia during the quarter, claiming about a third of the overall market with brands like Sampoerna and Dji Sam Soe. In particular, Philip Morris has had success with what it calls the Whites segment, claiming four-fifths of the market in that category. The key Machine-Made Kretek market, which makes up about three-fourths of Indonesia’s total market, has been less successful for Philip Morris, but the company still claims about 30% of that segment.

Indonesia has suffered from a sluggish economic environment lately, and Philip Morris has seen its market share fall by a full percentage point over the past year. Gains in the size of the market were largely due to the timing of the Ramadan period compared to last year’s second quarter, and Philip Morris expects long-term trends to be closer to flat. Nevertheless, Indonesia’s sheer size will make it an important market for Philip Morris to target going forward.

2. Russia

Russia also has a strong culture of smoking, and its size makes it an essential element of Philip Morris International’s overall strategic vision. The Russian cigarette market sold about 72.1 billion units in the second quarter, and Philip Morris was responsible for 20.5 billion of them, climbing market share of 27%.

Oddly enough, though, Russia is one area in which the Marlboro brand has been almost inconsequential. Marlboro has a market share of just 1.4%, compared to 8% for Bond Street and 3.9% for Parliament. Other brands, which include L&M, Chesterfield, Optima, and Next/Dubliss, were collectively responsible for more than half of Philip Morris sales in Russia.

Troubling for Philip Morris is that the Russian cigarette market is shrinking quickly, posting a nearly 7% year-over-year drop compared to last year’s second quarter. The price increases that Philip Morris has implemented to try to offset falling volume have resulted in a hit to market share, and the company will have to balance competitive pressure against its desire for higher profit in order to get the most from the nation.

3. Italy

By contrast, Philip Morris’ markets in the European Union are relatively small. Yet the EU is an essential component of Philip Morris’ success because of the company’s ability to squeeze higher profit margin from many countries there.
As an example, in the second quarter, Philip Morris’ sales in the EU and in Asia were roughly the same, but EU operating company income of $1.07 billion was more than $320 million higher than the corresponding figure in Asia.

Within the EU, Italy stands out. The Italian cigarette market sold only about 18.7 billion units in the second quarter, but Philip Morris was responsible for more than half of them, at 10.1 billion. Marlboro had market share of nearly a fourth all by itself, and the Chesterfield and Philip Morris brands were responsible for another 20 percentage points of share.

The good news for Philip Morris in Italy is that efforts to reduce the level of illegal trade in cigarettes has paid off somewhat. With the new PMI Impact campaign, Philip Morris hopes to engage a broader set of interested parties to fight smuggling, and the likely result is potential further gains in legitimate sales volumes of its tobacco products. Investors should watch results in Italy closely for additional signs of success on the illicit trade front.

Philip Morris wants to serve the whole world, and it will continue to reach out to customers everywhere it can find them. These three countries will be especially important for Philip Morris in its efforts to capture as much growth as possible going forward.

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Analysing Harmful Chemicals from E-Cigarettes

Reports have found that e-cigarettes release compounds that are toxic, and now a study from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has looked at the source and formation of the emissions and has shown how temperature, shape, and age of the e-cigarette influence the emissions. The data is important to the manufacturers and regulators looking to minimize the impacts of e-cigarettes on health.

The study was published in Environmental Science and Technology and found that the decomposition of propylene glycol and glycerine — due to the temperature of e-cigarettes — allows the emission of a poisonous blend of substances, including acrolein and formaldehyde. Since propylene glycol and glycerine are found in most e-fluids — the liquid vaporized in e-cigarettes — these toxic compounds are likely to be emitted from most vaporizers.

Is that machine smoking?

In the study the researchers recreated vaping using three different e-fluids in two vaporizers and used different battery settings. The two e-cigarettes were different, one low priced vaporizer with a single heating coil, the other more expensive with two heating coils.

Gas and liquid chromatography was used to analyse the vapour produced in the e-cigarettes and to examine what was in the vapour. They looking at the initial puffs and the later puffs after the e-cigarette had warmed up and achieved a constant state. They also looked at the effects of using an aged e-cigarette. The use of GC to analyse vapours is discussed in the article, Sample Preparation Options for Aroma Analysis.

A major finding was that the initial and steady state puffs were very different. Using a jig configured to copy a user drawing on an e-cigarette, the team drew on the e-cigarette taking puffs of 5 seconds each every 30 seconds. They found that the vapour temperature climbed quickly inside the initial 5 to 10 minutes until accomplishing a standard state temperature after about 20 puffs.

The difference in concentration of compounds between the initial and steady state puffs was a factor of 10 different in some instances — depending on the vaporizer used, the battery voltage, and the compound measured. For acrolein — an eye and respiratory irritant — a solitary loop e-cigarette working at 3.8 volts transmitted 0.46 micrograms for each puff in the initial 5 puffs, however at the steady state it emitted 8.7 micrograms for every puff. By comparison, regular cigarettes emit 400 to 650 micrograms of acrolein for every cigarette. The likely total for an e-cigarette — puffed for 20 puffs — is in the range 90 to 100 micrograms.

Keep your vaporizer clean

The team also looked at the effect of aging of an e-cigarette on its emissions. They used a single device for nine sequential 50-puff cycles without purifying. They found that emissions of formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, and acrolein —all either cancer agents or respiratory irritants — increased with age. This could be associated with the build-up of deposits on the heating coil.

In a news release from Berkeley Lab, Hugo Destaillats the paper’s lead author stated that ‘Regular cigarettes are super unhealthy. E-cigarettes are just unhealthy.’

Electronic cigarettes increase endothelial progenitor cells in the blood of healthy volunteers


•The cardiovascular impact of e-cigarettes is not known.
•Endothelial progenitor cells increase following brief e-cigarette use.
•This may represent endothelial activation or stress.

Abstract Background and aims

The use of electronic cigarettes is increasing dramatically on a global scale and its effects on human health remain uncertain. In the present study, we measured endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs) and microvesicles (MVs) in healthy young volunteers following short-term exposure to inhalation of e-cigarette vapor (ECV) to determine vascular changes.


Sixteen healthy seldom smokers were randomized into two groups either exposed or not exposed to 10 puffs of ECV for 10 min, in a crossover design. Blood samples were obtained at baseline and 1, 4 and 24 h following exposure. EPCs (CD34 + CD309) and MVs were analyzed by flow cytometry. MVs were phenotyped according to origin (platelet (CD41), endothelial (CD144), leukocytes (CD45), monocytes (CD14)) and nuclear content (SYTO 13 dye). In addition, expression of inflammation markers such P-selectin (CD62P), E-selectin (CD62E), CD40-ligand (CD154) and HMGB1 was investigated. Fractional exhaled nitric oxide (FeNO) was also measured at baseline and after 24 h.


EPC levels in blood were significantly increased 1 h following exposure to ECV and returned to baseline values after 24 h. Only E-selectin positive MVs (endothelial origin) were slightly elevated (p < 0.038). FeNO was unaffected by exposure to ECV.


In healthy volunteers, ten puffs of e-cigarette vapor inhalation caused an increase in EPCs. This increase was of the same magnitude as following smoking of one traditional cigarette, as we previously demonstrated. Taken together, these results may represent signs of possible vascular changes after short e-cigarette inhalation. Further studies analyzing potential cardiovascular health effects are critical as the e-cigarette market continues to burgeon.