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Impact of Waterpipe Configuration on the Size Distribution and Number Density of Smoke Particles and Targeted Chemical Analysis of Particle Profiles that Diminish Alveolar Cell Health

Principal Investigator: Cindy Hauser

Funding Mechanism: National Institutes of Health – Grant

ID number: 1R01HL134169-01

Award Date: 8/9/2016

Institution: Davidson College


Both new and long-time waterpipe smokers have misconceptions regarding the filtration ability of the waterpipe’s bowl liquid and the toxicity of components drawn into the lungs. However, waterpipe tobacco smoke includes many of the same harmful components found in cigarette smoke, and is even more complex because it includes charcoal heat source combustion products and pyrolysis products from the waterpipe tobacco’s humectants and flavorants. Air quality research can provide important data about waterpipe smoke hazards. The goal of this study is to examine the physical and toxicological characteristics of waterpipe smoke particles that affect air quality. Because particulate formation is affected by waterpipe configuration, researchers will analyze the physical properties of particles generated when pipe height, heat source (charcoal vs. non-charcoal), tobacco, and hose length/material are varied (Study Aim 1). Researchers will also determine the relative cell toxicity of waterpipe tobacco smoke generated by different waterpipe configurations and smoking regimes (Study Aim 2). These investigations will use whole smoke (not re-suspended condensate or vapor) and lung cells grown and exposed to smoke at the air-liquid interface.

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