Big Tobacco Fights One Major Battle For Us

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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.



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  1. Toweknee says

    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.

  2. Lincoln Pennell says

    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.

  3. Todd says

    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!

  4. Holly DeLain says

    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!

  5. mongrel says

    I’m interested to see how this turns out.

  6. Karla Lyle (MsV8PR) says

    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,

  7. Mike says

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

  8. Sylvie says

    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..

  9. GhOsT DoGg 79 says


  10. GhOsT DoGg 79 says

    i may stock up on some too

  11. saboinia says

    shakes head……………….dang nabbit

  12. John "Shub" Fellhoelter says

    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!!!!

  13. mrcrunch08 says

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

  14. robovape says

    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…

  15. Adam says

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

  16. moxie says

    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.

  17. Philippe Caron-Boutin says

    I will follow the issue of this curious case

  18. Steve Mitchell says

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

  19. Sabrina Mitchell says

    ok this is one to follow

  20. slap_maxwell says

    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.

  21. Morrinb says

    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.

  22. joy says

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

  23. Justin says

    Not sure how this will work out

  24. Karla Lyle (MsV8PR) says

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

  25. imtheboss says

    Im curios how it will go

  26. brianwilson says

    Wonder whats going to happen?

  27. Zane says


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