Skip to main content

ALERT: KPBS 89.5FM is undergoing scheduled upgrade work which may result in a temporary signal outage. Click here to listen on our radio stream.

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Vaccines | Racial Justice

UC San Diego Study Finds Link Between E-Cigarette Ads And Cigarette Smoking

A variety of e-cigarettes, July 7, 2015.

Photo by Associated Press

Above: A variety of e-cigarettes, July 7, 2015.

New research from UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center suggests ads for e-cigarettes may persuade young adults to try regular cigarettes.

The research is published in the March 26 issue of JAMA Pediatrics.

The study involved 10,989 young people ages 12 to 24 who said they had never smoked.

Participants were exposed to a variety of ads for smoking products and were interviewed one year later.

Those who remembered, or liked, the e-cigarette ads were significantly more likely to have smoked a cigarette within the past year. In fact, the study found receptivity to e-cigarette advertising increased the odds that someone would try cigarette smoking by 60 percent.

UCSD Moores Cancer Center professor emeritus of cancer prevention John Pierce, who led the study, said tobacco companies face heavy restrictions on cigarette advertising.

“This looks like they may be able to use e-cigarette advertising to get around them," he said. "And we’ve noticed that all the main tobacco companies now have got an e-cigarette product. And so, they’re all in the game.”

Pierce added that tobacco companies are trying to find ways to increase smoking.

“Cigarette smoking’s been going down, particularly in California," he said. "It’s been going down dramatically, especially among young people. We’ve seen that flatten out lately, and the question is can they turn it around and start having it go back up again.”

E-cigarettes are touted as a way for smokers to quit their tobacco habit.

New research from UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center suggests e-cigarette ads may actually prompt people to try regular cigarettes.


San Diego News Now podcast branding

San Diego news; when you want it, where you want it. Get local stories on politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings. Hosted by Anica Colbert and produced by KPBS, San Diego and the Imperial County's NPR and PBS station.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Curious San Diego banner

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.