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The Role of ENDS Use in Changing Rates of Escalation and Quitting of Cigarette Smoking in Those Under Age 35 Years in US Population

Principal Investigators: John P. Pierce and Tarik Benmarhnia

Funding Mechanism: NIH Grant

ID number: 1R01CA234539-01

Award Date: 9/11/2018

Institution: University of California, San Diego


Electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) have the potential to reduce the proportion of young adults who are addicted to cigarette smoking, either by reducing escalation to daily cigarette smoking or increasing cessation before age 35. The goal of this study is to determine whether ENDS use changes the pattern of escalation and early cessation among those younger than age 35 using data from the first four waves of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study. Study aims are: (1) to examine the contribution of early use of ENDS and other tobacco products in differentiating early cigarette smoking escalators from those who do not escalate before age 20; (2) to examine the contribution of ENDS use to late escalation of tobacco use; and (3) to identify whether ENDS use is associated with long-term discontinuation of cigarette smoking in people under age 35. Researchers will conduct separate analyses for early escalators, late escalators, and quitters before age 35, and will use various analytical methods including propensity score matching, marginal structural models, and targeted maximum likelihood estimation techniques. Findings may provide new information related to the potential long-term impact of ENDS use.