A report was made available to ASFA staff today (05/30/2019), put together by Raymond Niaura, PhD, Director of Science and Training at the Steve A Schroeder National Institue for Tobacco Research and Policy Studies at Truth Initiative. For those who aren't familiar, Truth Initiative has been one of the largest opponents of vaping, and are a well funded NGO with a mission to “inspire tobacco-free lives” - sadly this mission has began to tread outside of their initial scope, and into promoting the restriction and/or elimination of harm-reducing vapor products.
This report came into our possession when it was posted on the Truth Initiative website at https://truthinitiative.org, then subsequently removed a short time later. Upon reading through the report, we can see why…
There are many contradictions between the public rhetoric of the Truth Initiative and the evidence presented in this report. Please take a moment and read the report, and learn from their own science how they are manipulating the data. Then, decide for yourself where you stand on the so-called “worst public health crisis of our decade.”
Here are a few excerpts from the summary:
Most of the physiological harm attributable to cigarette smoking derives from the toxicants in tobacco and combustion products. Preventable morbidity and mortality has overwhelmingly been related to combusted tobacco smoking, not to nicotine itself. Decoupled from combustion or other toxic modes of delivery, nicotine, by itself, is much less harmful.
Nicotine is not known to cause cancer. Epidemiological evidence in human populations does not support the basic science concern from laboratory studies that nicotine promotes some cancer pathway activation. There is no evidence that nicotine, by itself, is a carcinogen. More research is required to demonstrate if, and to what degree, there may be a concern about nicotine’s role as a cancer promoter.
At very high doses, higher than those experienced by the vast majority of nicotine and tobacco product users, nicotine can cause serious acute toxicity.
Nicotine use causes neuroadaptive changes in the adult brain that may contribute to the risk of developing dependence, but many of these changes are largely reversible and not known to be harmful. Some animal model studies show that nicotine exposure in adolescence can induce neuroadaptive changes that persist into the adulthood of the animal. While animal models suggest possible concerns for humans, more research is required to demonstrate if, and at what dosage and duration of exposure, nicotine might have possible adverse effects during adolescent and young adult brain development.
Nicotine is used for a number of reasons. In human studies, acute administration of nicotine can have positive effects on cognitive processes, such as improving attention, fine motor coordination, concentration, memory, speed of information processing, and alleviation of boredom or drowsiness. Some nicotine users benefit from self-medication effects for alleviation of stress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health and medical conditions, including schizophrenia and Parkinson’s Disease. Nicotine also reverses cognitive deficits caused by withdrawal. It is not clear if chronic use of nicotine enhances cognitive function.