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URMC researchers get $2.1M grant to study e-cigarettes

Rochester Business Journal
August 7, 2014

Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center have begun a five-year, $2.1 million study expected to shape the Food and Drug Administration’s regulations on e-cigarettes, hookahs and miniature cigars.

The study, which was funded through a grant from the National Institutes of Health, in conjunction with the FDA, began Aug. 1.

“We know that traditional tobacco cigarettes cause numerous diseases,” said Thomas Mariani, associate professor of Pediatrics, Medicine, and Environmental Medicine at URMC and the study’s lead researcher. “We intend to determine the disease risk associated with nontraditional tobacco-related products, like e-cigarettes.”

The research team will be studying the effects of e-cigarettes and other nontraditional tobacco products on humans, in rodents and on the cellular level, URMC officials noted. The studies also will focus on how these products affect newborns and children.
The research comes as the nontraditional tobacco market has boomed, URMC officials said.
“If we spent an hour driving around, we could probably find 10 different e-cigarette chemical mixes or ‘juices,’” Mariani said. “In part, our research will compare these e-cigarette ‘juices’ — which contain nicotine, some inert substances and flavoring—and determine if any of them show responses that would create health concerns.”

(c) 2014 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail

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