Study says e-cigarettes may lead to cancer and heart disease

Vaping and e-cigarettes have gained considerable popularity as a less harmful alternative to traditional cigarettes

Researchers found evidence that nicotine inhaled from e-cigarettes could be converted into chemicals that damage DNA in the heart, lungs and bladder, and dampen down the body's genetic fix mechanisms. NRT has always been known as a much safer alternative to smoking'. Others say that the risks of vaping are unclear.

The news may come as a shock for many users of e-cigarettes, as vaping has grown in popularity due to its percieved health advantages over smoking tobacco. A study in mice, published today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, is sure to provide fodder for both sides. NNAL, another member of the nitrosamine family that damaged the smoking mice's DNA, was found to be reduced by 97% in E-cigarette smokers as opposed to tobacco smokers in another recent study. Thus, although ECS has fewer carcinogens than tobacco smoke, E-cigarette smokers might have a higher risk than nonsmokers of developing lung and bladder cancers and heart diseases, according to the authors. Their organs were likewise less able to fix DNA.

A recent report on e-cigarettes have found that they are not toxic and are in fact less risky that regular cigarettes. "The magnitude of how much a reduction in risk that would be is unknown", he said. The study estimates that the risk of one cigarette per day is greater than previously thought and equals about half the risk of smoking 20 cigarettes a day.

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The damage was seen both to DNA and its ability to fix itself, making cells more likely to mutate and develop into cancer, said lead researcher Moon-shong Tang, a professor of environmental medicine at New York University School of Medicine. By 2015, 16 per cent of American high school students said they used e-cigarettes, making it the most popular nicotine product among kids.

"Research in people has shown that those who make a complete switch from smoking tobacco to e-cigarettes can significantly reduce their exposure to key harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke". Most recently, though, that number has mysteriously dropped. In a new study, scientists warned that nicotine in e-cigarettes could convert into DNA-damaging chemicals.

Ultimately, whether these trends could lead to a whole new set of problems decades down the road is still a question for which we don't really have a good answer.

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