Electronic nicotine delivery systems: regulatory and safety challenges: Singapore perspective

Tob Control. 2014 Mar;23(2):119-25. doi: 10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2012-050483. Epub 2012 Dec 1.


Objective: Many electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) are marketed as safer tobacco alternative products or effective cessation therapies. ENDS samples were evaluated for design features, including nicotine and glycols content. This could be useful in developing a legal framework to handle ENDS.

Methods: Identification of the nicotine, glycerol and propylene glycol (PPG) contents was conducted using gas chromatography mass spectrometry with quantification performed using flame ionisation techniques.

Results: Varying nicotine amounts were found in ENDS cartridges which were labelled with the same concentration. Chemicals such as PPG and glycerol were found to be present in the nicotine-containing liquid of the cartridges. ENDS varied in their contents and packaging information. Limited information was available on the contents of nicotine and other chemicals present in a variety of ENDS sampled.

Conclusions: Based on samples tested in this study, many contain misleading information on product ingredients. The results show poor consistency between actual nicotine content analysed on ENDS cartridges and the amount labelled. These findings raise safety and efficacy concerns for current and would-be recreational users or those trying to quit smoking.

Keywords: Electronic nicotine delivery devices; Nicotine; Packaging and Labelling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Inhalation
  • Deception
  • Drug Delivery Systems*
  • Electronics*
  • Glycerol / administration & dosage
  • Glycerol / analysis
  • Humans
  • Marketing
  • Nicotine / administration & dosage
  • Nicotine / analysis*
  • Product Labeling
  • Propylene Glycol / administration & dosage
  • Propylene Glycol / analysis
  • Safety*
  • Singapore
  • Smoking Cessation
  • Smoking*
  • Tobacco Industry / legislation & jurisprudence*
  • Tobacco Products


  • Propylene Glycol
  • Nicotine
  • Glycerol