March 20, 2018 / 2:24 PM / a year ago

FDA seeks data on role of flavors in tobacco addiction

FILE PHOTO: Twenty-one year old men smoke outside a friend's apartment in Lower Manhattan, New York May 18, 2014. REUTERS/Eric Thayer

(Reuters) - The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday asked for data, research and public comment on the role that flavors such as menthol play in tobacco addiction, the agency’s latest move to curb nicotine addiction in the country.

The health regulator said it would seek more information about the pros and cons of flavors in drawing youth towards tobacco and getting adult smokers to quit or transition to potentially less harmful products.

The move by the regulator is part of a comprehensive plan, announced last summer, that is designed to move smokers towards potentially less harmful e-cigarettes.

Last week, the agency began soliciting public response for regulation related to a product standard to lower nicotine in cigarettes to minimally or non-addictive levels.

The window for public comment starts on Wednesday and will remain open for three months, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said in a statement.

Reporting by Sharnya G in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza

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