Figure 1.

Structure of the 'Categoria' electronic-cigarette (e-Cigarette). The e-Cigarette is a battery-powered electronic nicotine delivery device (ENDD) resembling a cigarette designed for the purpose of providing inhaled doses of nicotine by way of a vaporized solution to the respiratory system. This device provides a flavor and physical sensation similar to that of inhaled tobacco smoke, while no smoke or combustion is actually involved in its operation. It is composed of the following key components: (1) the inhaler - also known as 'cartridge' (a disposable non-refillable plastic mouthpiece - resembling a tobacco cigarette's filter - which contains an absorbent material that is saturated with a liquid solution containing nicotine); (2) the atomizing device (the heating element that vaporizes the liquid in the mouthpiece and generates the mist with each puff); (3) the battery component (the body of the device - resembling a tobacco cigarette - which houses a lithium-ion re-chargeable battery to power the atomizer). The body of the device also houses an electronic airflow sensor to automatically activate the heating element upon inhalation and to light up a red LED indicator to signal activation of the device with each puff. Each pre-filled 'Original' cartridges used in this study contains nicotine (7.25 mg/cartridge) dissolved in propylene glycol (233.7 mg/cartridge) and vegetable glycerin (64.0 mg/cartridge) [details can be found at: http://www.liaf-onlus.org/public/allegati/categoria1b.pdf webcite].

Polosa et al. BMC Public Health 2011 11:786   doi:10.1186/1471-2458-11-786
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