E-Liquid Testing w/ Russ

Posted by The VapeMate Team on 9/17/2014 to Industry

Russ Wishtart of Click-Bang Radio with guest speakers, Drs. Konstantinos Farsalinos and Gene Gillman talk about E-Liquid and Testing. The primary topics are Diacetyl (DA) and Acetyl Propionyl (AP) based on the flavouring study published in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research.

Dr. Farsalinos' narrative of the study can be found here.

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Key points that we took from this interview:

  • With Dr. Gene Gillman 15:00
    • Huge shout out to ECTA of Canada, first to act
    • Appears to be more that E-Liquid Manufacturers are either unaware or are being deceived
    • DA and AP are virtually the same
    • Results were confirmed 3 ways
    • Contact Info: www.enthalpy.com gene.gillman@enthalpy.com
  • With Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos 31:50
    • Known about DA & AP for a long time (tracked as far back as 2008 on ECF)
    • The study was crowd funded with exceptional participation
    • Concurs that AP is virtually identical to DA in terms of risk
    • There are no Safety Levels for Vaping so NIOSH standards had to be used
    • NIOSH's limit is environmental for work place (8 hours/day, 40 hours/wk)
    • Limits had to be interpreted using calculations and assumptions
    • Conservative recommended safety limts: DA 65 ug/day, PA 137 ug/day
    • Determine your intake: multiply the ug/ml in your E-Liquid times the number of mL/day used
    • The purpose of the study was to alert the Industry AND the Vapers to start working on the issue
    • DA and AP are an avoidable risk
    • The heating process does not increase the levels of DA or AP
    • Testing for DA and AP is NOT expensive ($100-150)
    • You can't prove or know anything unless it is tested
    • Testing was done with eGo Battery at 6.5 Watts and Clearomizer
    • In general, thermal degradation from sub-ohm and high wattage has other risks
    • Thermal degradation testing is on the agenda soon
    • If something is happening during heating process of low ohm/high watt, it will be an elevation of risk not reduced risk
    • It's not just the peak temperature but the duration
    • Popcorn Lung is VERY rare, even when exposed to high levels of Diacetyl
    • It is about allowing consumers to make an informed decision
    • The risk of DA and AP isn't just Popcorn Lung but any number obstructive lung disease.
    • The significant risk isn't Popcorn Lung but that DA and AP DOES damage your lungs, thus promotes a higher risk of lung dysfunction and disease
    • With the exception of liquids with extremely high presence of DA and/or AP, it is still much better to Vape that to smoke.
    • Flavour selection was targeted to sweet flavours so actual percentage will be lower but still significant.
    • DA and AP damage is not caused by ingestion or absorption but the actual physical contact with the lung tissue
    • It will take years to figure out all of the risks but we need to act on the known risks
    • "Cloud chasing" or long puffs and how long the vapour is held in the lungs increases the exposure to these compounds when they are present in the liquid.
    • Background data for the study does not contain any information about what flavours or companies that had liquids tested as part of the study. The reason was because it is not an issue for these specific flavours or companies but an industry wide issue that everyone needs to address.
    • No one should be marketing E-Cigarettes as "harmless" but certainly lower risk but we can not qualify how much lower at this time.
    • Flavour profiles for those selected were Sweet flavours but not fruit, tobacco or nut flavours.
    • Buteric Acid is a chemical that might be used as a substitute but not in large quantities and we do not have enough information to say it is suitable
    • Buteric Acid is NOT similar to AP or DA
    • There is no evidence that Acetoin in and of itself is an issue but if it is present, it should be tested for DA. DA is present during the creation of Acetoin which means it "could be" contaminated with DA.
    • Mixing flavours together does not create DA or AP.
    • When someone says they are testing, the key question to ask is for the Level of Detection (LOD) or Level of Qualification (LOQ). Some Flavouring Manufacturers are testing to 0.1% which is 1000 ppm, thus really is not a suitable test.
    • In order for a test to be suitable, the LOD or LOQ should be around 5 ppm
    • There are MANY gaps in the research and the industry needs to participate in any way possible
    • This is not a reason to panic but it is something that the industry needs to address to allow consumers to make an informed decision because the risk is known.
    • Dr. Farsalinos' Research information page: ecigarette-research.com

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