Product Characteristics, Marketing, and E-cigarette and Cigarette Use Across Adolescence and Young Adulthood Project 3

Project 3 will test hypothesized e-cigarette product characteristics and marketing strategies that may attract never-smokers and put them at risk for tobacco product use but do not affect the likelihood that young smokers will adopt and switch to e-cigarettes. Examples of product features that may disproportionately attract never smokers (vs. smokers) include sweet flavors (vs. tobacco or other flavors), devices and e-liquid compositions used to generate large aerosol clouds for “vape tricks” (vs. devices that look and feel like cigarettes), and youth-oriented marketing strategies for e-liquid naming (such as “Kustard Killer”) and packaging with cartoon images. Researchers will survey participants in a cohort of adolescents and young adults (ages 14-25) in Southern California. Findings may inform future regulatory activities related to e-cigarettes.

Principal Investigators

Rob McConnell, M.D.
Professor of Preventive Medicine

Jessica Barrington- Trimis, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Preventive Medicine

Project Aims

Aim 1: To evaluate the associations of: (a) product characteristics and marketing exposure with e-cigarette interest, (b) e-cigarette interest with subsequent initiation, and (c) marketing exposure with subsequent initiation

Aim 2: To evaluate the association of (a) e-cigarette initiation with cigarette initiation and progression, or discontinuation of tobacco product use, and (b) e-cigarette product characteristics and marketing exposure with dual use, nicotine dependence, or discontinuation of tobacco product use

Aim 3: To evaluate whether associations of product characteristics and marketing with outcomes observed in Aims 1 and 2 differ between baseline never-smokers and smokers

For more information on this project, please contact tcors@usc.edu

Publications

The University of Southern California's Tobacco Center of Regulatory Science (USC TCORS) for Vulnerable Populations is one of 9 Tobacco Centers of Regulatory Science in the U.S. We were created to serve in the production of relevant scientific data to inform the regulatory decision making at the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Center for Tobacco Products. Additionally, we are here to educate and train the next generation of tobacco regulatory scientists.

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