A study funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has found an association with young people being exposed to adverts for electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) and taking up smoking later in life.
The study followed 10 989 participants through the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study. The researchers sought to better understand the effect of e-cigarette advertising on young people and smoking uptake.
Household interviews using audio computer-assisted self-interviews were implemented to survey people aged 12-24 who had never smoked. The participants were exposed to "advertising for conventional cigarettes, electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), cigars, and smokeless tobacco products". Their progression towards tobacco use one year later was then measured.
The researchers found that those who were more receptive to advertising were more likely to have tried a cigarette by the time of the follow up. Over all participants were most receptive to e-cigarette adverts which were most strongly associated with trying a cigarette. The research will be useful to those exploring the regulation of such adverts for which models already exist for cigarettes.
An abstract of research was published online in JAMA Pediatrics and adds to a growing body of research exploring the uptake of e-cigarettes.