FDA authorizes first e-cigarettes, cites benefit for smokers

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FILE – This Wednesday, June 18, 2014 file photo shows VUSE Digital Vapor Cigarette packaging during a launch event held by R.J. Reynolds Vapor Company in Philadelphia. On Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021, heath officials authorized the first electronic cigarettes in the U.S., saying R.J. Reynolds vaping products can benefit adult smokers. (Mark Stehle/AP Images for R.J. Reynolds Vapor Company, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Health officials have authorized the first electronic cigarettes in the U.S., saying the R.J. Reynolds vaping products can benefit adult smokers.

The Food and Drug Administration said data submitted by the company showed its Vuse e-cigarettes helped smokers either quit or significantly reduce their use of cigarettes.

Tuesday’s action is part of a sweeping effort by the FDA to bring scientific scrutiny to the multibillion-dollar vaping industry after years of regulatory delays. In September, the agency rejected applications for more than a million e-cigarettes and related products, mainly due to their potential appeal to underage teens.

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