OU Medicine

NEWS

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Researcher Awarded Grant to Study Effects of Vaping

Sept. 25, 2019

With vaping products rising in popularity over the past few years, it is important to focus on how users’ respiratory systems react to the nicotine product.

A researcher at the Oklahoma Tobacco Research Center at Stephenson Cancer Center, Alayna Tackett, Ph.D., was recently awarded a five-year research grant by the National Institutes of Health to study the effects of vaping and vape products on human health.

“We’ve had generations to study the effects of combustible tobacco, but this is the first time we are looking at vaping,” Tackett said. “The goal of the study is to examine the effects that vaping has on the respiratory system.”

The grant, worth a total of $983,190, will help Tackett examine the respiratory differences between youth/young adult e-cigarette users and non-users over the course of a year. By measuring the volume of vapor inhaled by e-cigarette users and comparing it to non-users, Tackett will be able to examine the changes in respiratory function. The study will also examine if e-cigarette users become susceptible to other tobacco products, and will determine how the additional products impact users’ respiratory health.

This is one of the first studies in the nation to look at the long-term effects of vaping. Currently, there are no FDA regulations on vaping products and devices, so the results of this study, if taken into account,

could have the potential to inform tobacco regulatory efforts and policy to improve public health.

Tackett’s research is supported in part by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET). An endowment created by the voters in 2000 to improve the health of Oklahomans, TSET is dedicated to reducing the state’s leading causes of preventable death – cancer and cardiovascular disease – caused by tobacco use and obesity.