This episode eight of the Drug-Season series of Just Science podcasts consists of an interview with Dr. Michelle Peace - a consusltant for Kroll Laboratories and private companies developing drug-testing programs - who discusses her research on electronic cigarettes (e-cig), which facilitate inhaling the vapor from a heated e-liquid that contains nicotine or other drug.
The first half of the interview was recorded just over a year ago, and the second half of the interview is an update of Peace's research on the features, components, and effects of using e-cigs. Currently, e-cigs are unregulated except for state laws that prohibit them being sold to minors. Research with potential implications for the regulation of e-cigs has focused on the constituents of e-liquids, the concentration levels of various substances whose vapors are inhaled through e-liquid, and the possible impact of the inhalation of metal elements from the heated coils of e-cigs. There is also concern about "second-hand" inhalation from the vapor "clouds" produced by e-cigs. Peace's research on e-cigs has focused on the vaporizing of nicotine, but she anticipates expanding research on the vaporization of other drugs injected into e-liquids, such as methamphetamine and methadone. Research findings will have implications for forensic toxicology.