Cigarette smoke but not electronic cigarette aerosol activates a stress response in human coronary artery endothelial cells in culture

It is generally acknowledged that e-cigarettes are unlikely to be as harmful as conventional cigarettes, but there is little data that quantifies their relative harms. We investigated the biological response to e-cigarette aerosol exposure (versus conventional cigarette smoke exposure) at the cellular level, by exposing human coronary artery endothelial cells (HCAEC) to aqueous filtered extracts of e-cigarette aerosol or cigarette smoke and looking at gene expression changes consistent with a stress response. This included genes controlled by the oxidant-stress sensing transcription factor NFR2 (NFE2L2), and cytochrome P450 family members.

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