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Basic Science Research Key to Informing Public Policy About Regulation of Novel Nicotine-Containing Products

Research has provided significant insight into the abuse liability and negative health consequences associated with tobacco and nicotine-containing products. As novel nicotine-containing products and alternative nicotine products are introduced and selectively marketed to vulnerable populations, more research is necessary to guide regulatory efforts to protect public health.

A review by a consortium of researchers, including Heath Schmidt, PhD, Assistant Professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing (Penn Nursing), explored scientific findings that have impacted regulatory policy of nicotine and tobacco products. The review explains how a collaborative effort between researchers and policy makers can reduce the death and disease resulting from tobacco use. The review, “Basic Science and Public Policy: Informed Regulation for Nicotine and Tobacco Products,” has been published in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research. It proposes bidirectional communication between scientists and policy makers to develop science-based preventive- and intervention-focused policies and programs to reduce appeal, abuse liability and toxicity of the products.

“Collaborative efforts to inform and modify policy have the potential to significantly decrease the use of tobacco and alternative nicotine products and thus enhance health outcomes for individuals,” said Schmidt, one of the authors of the review.