ANOTHER study finds popular brand of e-cigarettes cause DNA damage in lungs

Juul me once… ANOTHER study finds e-cigarettes cause DNA damage in the lungs that’s comparable to normal cigarettes

  • Researchers at McGill University, Canada, exposed mice to 60 puffs a day
  • They found rodents had signs of lung damage within one month
  • Vaping has become an epidemic in America’s youth amid glitzy adverts 

Vaping for just one month leads to DNA damage that is comparable to smoking tobacco, another damning study of e-cigarettes suggests.

Researchers at McGill University in Montreal, Canada, exposed mice to the equivalent of 60 puffs of a mango-flavored Juul device per day for four weeks. 

The rodents suffered cellular and molecular changes that have been linked to the formation of cancer in traditional cigarette smokers.

America is currently in the grips of a vaping epidemic among children that has been blamed on child-friendly flavoring and glitzy shop window displays.

Vaping for just one month leads to ‘widespread changes’ in lungs and raises the levels of inflammation, another study suggests (file photo)

At least 2.6million American children 11 to 18 years old use e-cigarettes, official figures show, and the number is rising.

In the latest study, scientists exposed mice to air from a Juul device, which contained nicotine.

A third of the mice were blasted with 60-Juul puffs a day, administered in three 20-minute sessions with a three-hour gap between each.

This was to mimic low use of the vaping devices, the researchers said. 

In a survey in November, one in ten teenagers admitted to vaping within five minutes of waking up — a sign of addiction — while a quarter said they used vapes daily.

The rest of the mice were exposed to e-liquid used in vapes, or just air in the laboratory.

E-liquid — used to create the vapor — contains propylene glycol, a byproduct of petroleum, and vegetable glycerin, from vegetable oil.

The study focused on Juul, but studies have shown that other brands also have a damaging effect on the lungs.

Many vape devices contain e-liquids that hold hundreds of chemicals which can be harmful to the lungs. They also contain nicotine, which can prompt addiction to vaping. 

After four weeks, the scientists killed the mice and examined their lungs for signs of the effects of Juul machines.

Results showed mice exposed to e-cigarette fumes had higher levels of white blood cells in their lungs, indicating higher levels of inflammation.

Testing also revealed alterations in hundreds of genes in macrophages — another type of white blood cell involved in the immune response to infection or damage.

They said that the alterations they observed suggested an increased risk for vaping-associated lung injury (EVALI). 

Symptoms of the condition include shortness of breath, chest pain, coughing and hemoptysis — or coughing up blood. In severe cases, it can result in death.

Since 2019, thousands of cases have been reported across the US, with the condition strongly linked to e-cigarettes.

The researchers concluded: ‘Thus, e-cigarettes are not inert and can cause significant cellular and molecular changes in the lungs.

Dr Carolyn Baglole, an experimental medicine expert at McGill University, said: ‘The health consequences of vaping are not known. 

‘Our results show that inhalation of the vapor generated by a popular brand of e-cigarette causes widespread changes inside the lungs.

‘Data that further highlight that these products are not inert and may lead to lung damage if used long term.’

She added: ‘We show low level chronic exposure aerosols has local immunomodulatory effects, and drastically changes protein and RNA expression in important pulmonary sites.’ contacted Juul for comment.

Dual e-cig and traditional cigarette use simultaneously worsens risk 

– E-cigarettes and traditional combustible cigarettes on their own can cause a host of inflammatory and heart problems

– When used simultaneously, the health effects could be even worse

– Long-term use of either caused damage to blood vessels, though each appeared to cause some adverse effects that the other does not, suggesting that dual use of the products compounds the damage.

– Blood from the e-cig users caused more permeability in the blood vessel cells than the blood from both tobacco smokers and nonusers, raising the risk of cell damage and heart disease.

– Blood from tobacco smokers had higher levels of certain circulating biomarkers of cardiovascular risks

– Lead author of the study said using both products together ‘could increase their health risks compared to using them individually’