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Open AccessArticle

The Impact of Device Settings, Use Patterns, and Flavorings on Carbonyl Emissions from Electronic Cigarettes

1
Division of Atmospheric Sciences, Desert Research Institute, Reno, NV 89512, USA
2
Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, School of Public Health, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
3
Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
4
Center for Tobacco Studies, School of Public Health, Rutgers University, Piscataway, NJ 08854, USA
5
Cancer Prevention & Control Research Program, Cancer Institute of New Jersey, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08901, USA
6
Department of Urban-Global Public Health, School of Public Health, Rutgers University, Newark, NJ 07102, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(16), 5650; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17165650
Received: 11 June 2020 / Revised: 21 July 2020 / Accepted: 29 July 2020 / Published: 5 August 2020
Health impacts of electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) vaping are associated with the harmful chemicals emitted from e-cigarettes such as carbonyls. However, the levels of various carbonyl compounds under real-world vaping conditions have been understudied. This study evaluated the levels of carbonyl compounds (e.g., formaldehyde, acetaldehyde, glyoxal, and diacetyl, etc.) under various device settings (i.e., power output), vaping topographies, and e-liquid compositions (i.e., base liquid, flavor types). The results showed that e-vapor carbonyl levels were the highest under higher power outputs. The propylene glycol (PG)-based e-liquids generated higher formaldehyde and acetaldehyde than vegetable glycerin (VG)-based e-liquids. In addition, fruit flavored e-liquids (i.e., strawberry and dragon fruit) generated higher formaldehyde emissions than mint/menthol and creamy/sweet flavored e-liquids. While single-top coils formed 3.5-fold more formaldehyde per puff than conventional cigarette smoking, bottom coils generated 10–10,000 times less formaldehyde per puff. In general, increases in puff volume and longer puff durations generated significantly higher amounts of formaldehyde. While e-cigarettes emitted much lower levels of carbonyl compounds compared to conventional cigarettes, the presence of several toxic carbonyl compounds in e-cigarette vapor may still pose potential health risks for users without smoking history, including youth. Therefore, the public health administrations need to consider the vaping conditions which generated higher carbonyls, such as higher power output with PG e-liquid, when developing e-cigarette product standards. View Full-Text
Keywords: electronic cigarette; carbonyl; power; vaping topography; e-liquid; flavoring electronic cigarette; carbonyl; power; vaping topography; e-liquid; flavoring
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MDPI and ACS Style

Son, Y.; Weisel, C.; Wackowski, O.; Schwander, S.; Delnevo, C.; Meng, Q. The Impact of Device Settings, Use Patterns, and Flavorings on Carbonyl Emissions from Electronic Cigarettes. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 5650.

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