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Hong Kong study shows e-cigarette ingredient has cancer causing agent (South China Morning Post, Elizabeth Cheung)

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The Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health is calling for a total ban on the sale of e-cigarettes, based in part on a study they commissioned by Baptist University which found that e-cigarettes contained 1 million more cancer-causing substances than outdoor air, and a flame retardant associated with reproductive cancer.

Researchers analyzed 13 products, and found that each contained polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the range of 2.9 to 504 nano grams per milliliter. PAHs are also a byproduct of burning petroleum in roadside air. PAHs contain chemicals that promote cancer cell growth. The researchers found that PAH levels in e-cigarettes where at least 1 million times more than roadside air in Hong Kong.The researchers also found that a flame retardant in e-cigarettes disrupts the thyroid hormone and causes toxicity of reproductive development that could lead to cancer.

The researchers also found that packaging of the 13 products either stated there was no nicotine, or did not mention nicotine, but when tested the products contained nicotine levels from 3.5 to 28.5 ng/ml.

Read the full South China Morning Post’s 2-29-16 story.