Oxford Experts – The Latest Vape Research on Podcast

Harm reduction advocate Charles Gardner said: “What happens when researchers who have no big tobacco or vape industry ties … talk about the latest findings on nicotine vape safety and efficacy for smoking cessation? A breath of fresh air.” He was referring to a new podcast series hosted by Oxford University’s Dr Jamie Hartmann-Boyce and Dr Nicola Lindson.

vaping podcastDr Jamie Hartmann-Boyce and Dr Nicola Lindson are part of a team of Oxford researchers who search for new vaping related studies each month. In their podcast, they discuss their findings and talk about how this alters what we currently know about electronic cigarettes and their use.


One problem with such things can be trusting the message. Hartmann-Boyce and Lindson are both independent academics who take no money from the tobacco or vape industry. Funding for this work comes from Cancer Research UK. This means we can trust what they are saying.


The latest podcast episode (1) features special guest Dr Caitlin Notley (2), who works at University of East Anglia’s Norwich Medical School. Again, Notley is independent from industry any influence.


They begin by discussing a new paper thrown up by their research; a large, randomised control trial covering around 3,000 people. It looked to see how successful vaping could be in supporting a quit smoking attempt.


Their second study they looked at covered 520 subjects who were smokers but not interested in quitting tobacco. They were given ecigs with 0, 8, or 36mg/ml of nicotine – or a cigarette shaped plastic tube to suck on for 6 months.


Their third paper was led by Professor Christopher Russell, a well-known expert in the field of vaping research. This covered over 400 smoking adults who were either given traditional nicotine replacement products or a pod vaping device. The pod users were given either normal e-liquid or e-liquid containing salt nicotine.


All three research projects found that smokers using vaping products were more likely to quit and remain tobacco-free at the end of the trial period.


The fourth study they considered had a very small sample so isn’t significant.


Professor Caitlin Notley spoke about the Cochrane Review she led (3). The work looked at people’s experiences and opinions of vaping. The podcast attempts to explain the meaning of academic terms in simple language so the discussion can be followed by non-specialists.


Notley’s team found:

  • More people probably stop smoking for at least six months using nicotine ecigarettes than using nicotine replacement therapy”
  • “Nicotine ecigarettes may help more people to stop smoking than no support or behavioural support only”
  • “For every 100 people using nicotine ecigarettes to stop smoking, 10 might successfully stop, compared with only six of 100 people using nicotinereplacement therapy or nicotinefree ecigarettes, or four of 100 people having no support or behavioural support only

There are currently four episodes of the podcast and they make for good listening for anyone interested in finding out more about the science taking place with regards e-cig use and vaping.


  1. Let’s Talk E-cigarettes – https://podcasts.ox.ac.uk/
  2. Professor Caitlin Notley – https://people.uea.ac.uk/c_notley
  3. Electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation – https://www.cochranelibrary.com/

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