A top US health official told lawmakers on 24 September that e-cigarette market leader Juul uses nicotine salts in its vaping devices, which can lead to much more available nicotine and could be particularly dangerous for teenagers, reports CNBC.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Principal Deputy Director Dr Anne Schuchat told the House Oversight and Reform Committee’s panel on consumer products that doctors believe the salts allow nicotine to “cross the blood brain barrier and lead to potentially more effect on the developing brain in adolescents”.
Juul executives have said that its nicotine salt gives users an experience similar to conventional cigarettes, which the company says helps smokers quit, write Angelica LaVito and Elijah Shama for CNBC.
But the CDC worries about the effects of nicotine salts on the developing brain in young people. Those effects include difficulty with memory, learning and attention, Schuchat said.
Nicotine addiction can also prime the body to become addicted to other substances, which is “of particular concern”, she said at an emergency hearing into a recent outbreak of a deadly vaping illness in the US.
“The devices are very easy to conceal, between the high levels of nicotine and discreet use, we think that the use among teens is particularly concerning,” she said.
The CDC is particularly worried about flavoured e-cigarettes and “the role that they play in hooking young people to a life of nicotine”, according to CNBC.
Full report on the CNBC siteCDC warns of dangers of nicotine salts used by vaping giant Juul in e-cigarettes