Thursday, September 29, 2016

Smokers Beware! E-cigarettes Alter Your Genes

Smokers Beware! E-cigarettes Alter Your Genes

Penn State University


Many may believe that smoking e-cigarettes is not as dangerous as smoking regular cigarettes. Now, it turns out that vaping electronic cigarettes could also alter the genes involved in airway immune defense.

Researchers from the University of North Carolina Health Care say that this will reduce a smoker’s airway immune resistance. Consequently, smokers will be more prone to developing bacterial infections.

“I was really surprised by these results,” adds lead researcher Ilona Jaspers, UNC’s professor of paediatrics, microbiology and immunology. “That’s why we kept going back to make sure this was accurate.”

Smoking e-cigarette. Credit: Penn State University

The study was published on June 10 in the American Journal of Physiology. It involved investigating 14 regular smokers and 12 e-cigarette smokers.

The participants reported their cigarette use. Together with researchers from the University of California at San Francisco, the team assessed the participants’ urine and blood samples.

The team then analyzed the genes in the participants’ nasal passages. Compared to nonsmokers, the regular cigarette smokers experienced a reduction of gene expression of 53 genes responsible for immune defense.

On the other hand, there was a total of 358 gene reduction in e-cigarette smokers. This included the 53 ones reduced from using regular cigarettes.

“We compared these genes one by one,” adds Jaspers. “And we found that each gene common to both groups was suppressed more in the e-cigarette group. We currently do not know exactly how e-cigarettes do this.”

Still, the team asserts that this does not mean that smoking e-cigarettes is worse than or just as bad as regular cigarettes. Moreover, the long-term health problems cannot yet be determined. Since e-cigarette smoking is new, we cannot say if it causes disease like cancer, emphysema, COPD or others that take years to develop.

“We honestly do not yet know what long-term effects e-cigarettes might have on health,” says Jaspers. “I suspect that the effects of e-cigarettes will not be the same as the effects of cigarette smoking.”

The the team will study how epithelial cells exposed to e-cigarettes react with flu vaccine. This will reveal the exact immune response measurement of epithelial cells in smokers and nonsmokers.


  • Crunchy2k

    No, e-cigarettes do not alter your genes unless you are a writer that flunked his science class. Then it is obvious that the fellow is using something else to alter his genes. One of the ingredients of e-liquid is propylene glycol(PG.) PG is a well known safe air sanitizer. A 2007 FDA recertification of PG recommends that PG be removed to level 1 of the poison list as no pre-natal or post-natal effects have been observed in human babies.

    If you don’t want to catch a cold or the flu next winter, sit by someone vaping or take up vaping yourself.8)

  • charlie

    All you smokers out there! Keep smoking! Okay may be you’ll die young but that’s a good thing because everybody else can retire on the benefits you don’t collect AND the taxes you pay help support government employees and NOBODY is more deserving than them. Vaping saves you a lot of money and probably you’ll live longer but then you are just being selfish.

  • Miranda

    Since I already have severe emphasema and am on oxygen therapy so I can breath a little easier all I can say is that if I had not taken up vaping I would be dead already!!
    My lungs have cleared so much since vaping, however on the occasional slip back to cigarrettes, within one day I can feel my lungs get so tight that even my oxygen barely helps me! I shouldn’t be smoking whilst on oxygen at all but that’s the power of the addiction that many unlucky people are pre-disposed to.
    So what would you rather me do then Mr Gene altering expert? Stop vaping so I can be killed off quicker..I mean that’s the most lucrative way I can die for the Govt and their employees, or would it not be morally right to allow me to extend my life even if its for just a few more years by vaping??
    Go on, you have all the answers?? …. You certainly DO NOT!
    You have no idea what you’re talking about neither do you have a clue the huge difference there is to the quality of life one has as a vaper compared to a smoker of poisonous foul smelling carcinogenic cigarettes!
    Go find something honest to write about or don’t write at all!