According to scientists from British American Tobacco, e-cig vapour does not induce DNA mutations, which have been linked to some tobacco smoke exposures.
In various lab-based tests, dubbed the “Ames test”, scientists compared the mutagenic potential of cigarette smoke with vapour from a widely popular e-cigarette.
The Ames test only reflects the vast majority of mainstream science’s stance that e-cigarettes are significantly healthier than regular cigarettes.
Using bacteria to determine whether a specific chemical or drug can cause mutations in the DNA, it is known that DNA mutations can lead to genetic instability and increase the risk of cancer.
In this particular study, the bacteria utilised Salmonella typhimurium stains TA98 and TA100, and were tested against e-cig vapour and cigarette smoke.
Exposure to smoke caused mutations in both of the bacterial strains. Tellingly, the results were dependent on dosage: the higher the dosage, the more mutation occurred.
Unsurprisingly, it only took 24 minutes for the mutation process to begin. However, e-cig vapour did not initiate a response or mutation, despite just three hours of continuous exposure.
Similar studies have yielded similarly conclusive and vindicating results. A recent study showed that e-cigarettes cause no oxidative lung cells stress response. Another found that the lung cells of a “smoking robot” were killed by cigarette smoke, but were unmoved by e-cig vapour.
“These findings suggest that Vype ePen vapour does not induce the mutations observed on exposure to smoke,” said Dr James Murphy, Head of Reduced Risk Substantiation at British American Tobacco.
“This study adds data to support the growing evidence base that e-cigarettes have the potential to be significantly less harmful compared to cigarette smoke, though more research is needed.”