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Session 7, Abstract 43

EXPLODING ONTO THE SCENE: ELECTRONIC CIGARETTES’ EFFECT ON BONE 

Mary M. Brown* and Hailey Chambers (Sara J. Heggland), The College of Idaho, Department of Biology, 2112 Cleveland Blvd., Caldwell, ID 83605. 

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) are becoming increasingly popular worldwide as a nicotine delivery system independent from the combustion of tobacco. Refillable e-liquids used in e-cigs are sold in many flavors, but their production is unstandardized. Currently, their potential impact on human health remains unclear. The unidentified health risks associated with e-cig use combined with the lack of standardization point to the need for e-cig research. Since tobacco use is a well-known risk factor for bone-related diseases, we are interested in the effect of e-cigs on bone-forming osteoblasts. We hypothesize that exposure to e-liquid can impair osteoblast function. Human osteoblast-like MG-63 cells were exposed to different concentrations of commercially available vaped or unvaped e-liquids with or without nicotine for 48 hours. Cell viability and procollagen type I mRNA expression were assessed using an MTT assay and qPCR, respectively. Unvaped e-liquids reduced cell viability in a dose-dependent manner, which was exacerbated with flavorings. Cells responded differently when exposed to vaped e-liquids. Only the vaped fruit flavored e-liquids decreased cell viability, and this effect was rescued by the presence of nicotine. Ongoing studies are evaluating the effect of e-liquid on procollagen type I mRNA expression. This is the first study to demonstrate e-liquids can have a direct impact on osteoblasts, and hopes to further our understanding of e-cigs’ effect on bone health to aid in developing a safer e-cig. The project was supported by the NIH Grant #P20GM103408.