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Why Vapers Shouldn’t Read too Much into Experiments with Human Cells in a Petri Dish.

petri-dish

Brad Rodu, Professor of Medicine at the University of Louisville, and holder of an endowed chair in tobacco harm reduction research, has written a post aimed at vapers regarding experiments and research done with cells in a petri dish – also referred to as ‘in vitro’ studies.

In vitro studies are performed with microorganisms, cells or biological molecules outside their normal biological context. 

Professor Rodu writes about how delicate the cells become when they are out of their natural context, writing, “Human cells nurtured in labs’ artificial environments are exquisitely delicate; even under perfect conditions, it is exceedingly difficult to keep them alive – a minor change in the environment can skew an experiment and even kill the cells”  

Humans, he writes, are far more resistant.  

Stating that if medicines were tested in vitro only, many would not be on the market. Referring back to e-liquid, he writes “E-cigarette liquids are being vilified through such tests.  Vapers should not be fooled by the irresponsible transformation of weak cause-and-effect analyses into hypothetical illnesses. Largely harmless products can be portrayed quite readily as dangers – coffee, for example, has not been linked to any serious disease, but one could point to lab studies showing that coffee kills cells and promotes cancers. These claims would have about as much scientific credibility as the current claims against e-cigarettes.” 

26th February 2016, 17:18