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Approaches to toxicant reduction

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Reducing smoke toxicant yields without increasing the yields of other smoke toxicants or diminishing the product acceptability to consumers is challenging.

In attempts to achieve this goal, our scientists have researched on:

  • using filters and filter additives to reduce toxicant yields
  • reducing the levels of toxicant precursors in tobacco leaf
  • introducing ingredients or additives to the tobacco
  • modifying the way in which the cigarette burns

The industry’s efforts to date to develop a commercially successful, potentially reduced-exposure product (PREP) have recently been reviewed [1].

That review highlighted some of the product modifications that have taken place over the last 50 years including; 

  • attempts to selectively reduce polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons;
  • attempts to selectively reduce TSNAs;
  • attempts to produce low tar and low gas toxicant cigarettes;
  • the development of tobacco substitutes;
  • development of ‘heat-not-burn’ products such as Premier, Eclipse and Accord;
  • modification of flue-curing processes; and
  • use of multi-component filters.

We continue to pursue these and other emerging techologies for their potential to produce a consumer-acceptable reduced toxicant product.


  1. Baker, R. R. (2006). Smoke generation inside a burning cigarette: Modifying combustion to develop cigarettes that may be less hazardous to health. Progress in Energy and Combustion Science. 32 (4): 373-385. Abstract: Smoke generaion...  Opens new window
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