Big Tobacco Fights One Major Battle For Us

Klaus Kneale
by Klaus Kneale
27 Comments
January 14, 2013

At the beginning of the month, US District Court Judge, Richard Leon decided to allow a lawsuit against the FDA to move forward.  The plaintiffs: tobacco giants R.J. Reynolds and Lorillard.  The suit alleges conflicts of interest for the FDA’s Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Committee (TPSAC).

The TPSAC has been advising the FDA commissioner since its creation in June of 2009.  The committee’s primary focus is providing regulatory advice where tobacco products are concerned.  Committee members aren’t allowed to hold financial ties to the focus area of their committee.  As such, none of the members are financially tied to tobacco companies.  The problem is that at least 3 members are financially tied to pharmaceuticals companies which produce smoking cessation drugs.

This means that pharmaceutical interests might be protected by the FDA though various conflicts of interests.  The culprits: committee members Jack Henningfield (paid consultant with GlaxoSmithKline), Neal L. Benowitz (paid consultant with GlaxoSmithKline and Pfizer), and TPSAC chair Jonathan Samet (recieved funding from GlaxoSmithKline).

The suit was filed in February of 2011 and this is its first break in some time.  If the FDA is forced to reconstruct its tobacco committee, every decision made from its inception could be called into questions.  Certainly, the way electronic cigarettes have been handled might raise a few questions.  If the FDA protected cessation drugs from a far more successful alternative for the sake of its ties to Big Pharma, it may find itself unable to do anything to the industry moving forward.

Clearly, this is an area that could have a profound impact on the future of electronic cigarettes.  We’ll be keeping an eye on this as things develop.

 

 

Comments

27 Responses to “Big Tobacco Fights One Major Battle For Us”

      Toweknee on January 14th, 2013 9:32 pm

      Start storing up your NIC or start buying large quantities. Nic is going to cost an arm and a leg if the government gets involved. Though one thing that bothers me and I am guilty of it as well is buying from the Asian Market. I know products are cheaper to manufacture but there are a lot of problems as well. Maybe some US markets can spring up on this as well.

        Lincoln Pennell on January 14th, 2013 9:44 pm

        Wow …… This is getting pathedic …… Some day the Gov will just have to be taught a lesson ……… To just leave us alone and to remember we let them have a Job and Yes we can end there jobs as well.

          Todd on January 14th, 2013 11:25 pm

          It would be nice to see the ecig industry get a fair shake in the end. I’ll hate to see the taxing they would toss at everything but I’d still be happy with the risk reduction versus no options at all. I hope they fight the battle well!

            Holly DeLain on January 14th, 2013 11:58 pm

            Oh Yeah!! This is definitely ONE instance when
            e-cigs being lumped in with all tobacco just happens to come in handy! E-cigs can certainly use all the help it can get as far as money to fight the FDA!
            This should at least bring some light to our fight and have people questioning the FDA’s real motivators!

              mongrel on January 15th, 2013 12:31 am

              I’m interested to see how this turns out.

                Karla Lyle (MsV8PR) on January 15th, 2013 12:40 am

                I really hope this isn;t going to happen. It will not make vaping cost effective and will keep people from switching. Cost was one of the mail reason I wanted to quit smoking and start vaping. This is just really sad,

                  Mike on January 15th, 2013 2:05 am

                  So how long does nicotine last? If I stock up on some 100mg bottles will it last a good long while?

                    Sylvie on January 15th, 2013 4:28 am

                    at least two years Mike if stored properly, probably a lot longer IMO if kept sealed the whole time..

                    Although big tobacco getting involved is bound to result in higher prices for us, them being involved is probably best, it will really help with keeping ecigs from being banned given they have tons of money to put up a fight to keep them legal..

                      GhOsT DoGg 79 on January 15th, 2013 2:06 pm

                      ,,,,dang

                        GhOsT DoGg 79 on January 15th, 2013 2:07 pm

                        i may stock up on some too

                          saboinia on January 15th, 2013 4:24 pm

                          shakes head……………….dang nabbit

                            John "Shub" Fellhoelter on January 15th, 2013 5:36 pm

                            I’m hoping everything stays as is… The MAIN reason I started vaping was to save money… and if prices get jacked up I may just have to quit altogether.. BOOO!!!!

                              mrcrunch08 on January 15th, 2013 7:37 pm

                              Thats great news. Everyone has an agenda. Hopefully things will be a bit more fair now.

                                robovape on January 15th, 2013 8:09 pm

                                i hope this will play out as a step toward good regulation instead of the road to bad regulation we’ve been on so far… still though, it’s tough to call, so big pharma looks bad, but they always have, big tobacco is the uglier sister of the two and i see the FDA and the courts protecting the drug companies’ interests moreso than the tobacco industry…

                                  Adam on January 15th, 2013 8:16 pm

                                  This is both good and bad for reasons previously stated in the article and in the comments.

                                    moxie on January 15th, 2013 11:28 pm

                                    Can’t believe they create a committee with no ties to the tobacco industry… you would have thought they would have included pharmaceutical companies as well…or maybe they did…big money there.

                                      Philippe Caron-Boutin on January 16th, 2013 1:22 am

                                      I will follow the issue of this curious case

                                        Steve Mitchell on January 16th, 2013 4:29 am

                                        Wow, I never thought I’d say this but I hope big tobacco wins, lol

                                          Sabrina Mitchell on January 16th, 2013 4:36 am

                                          ok this is one to follow

                                            slap_maxwell on January 16th, 2013 5:17 am

                                            This is why I’m not afraid of the tobacco companies getting into e-cigs; it makes good financial sense for them, and the have the war-chest to protect their investments.

                                              Morrinb on January 16th, 2013 4:28 pm

                                              This may actually be good news. If the tobacco lobby is doing us a favor then I’m not going to insult them while they do it.

                                                joy on January 24th, 2013 11:57 pm

                                                I would probably buy e-cigs from non tobacco companies and keep my cost lower if over taxing started to happen.

                                                  Justin on January 25th, 2013 5:45 am

                                                  Not sure how this will work out

                                                    Karla Lyle (MsV8PR) on January 27th, 2013 12:25 pm

                                                    Well this is a good start. I am just praying they don’t ban ecigs. This lawsuit brings up a great point.

                                                      imtheboss on February 18th, 2013 9:38 pm

                                                      Im curios how it will go

                                                        brianwilson on February 20th, 2013 2:29 am

                                                        Wonder whats going to happen?

                                                          Zane on March 3rd, 2013 5:38 pm

                                                          :o

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