A novel carbon filter has been developed which primarily reduces the amount of certain vapor phase constituents of tobacco smoke with greater efficiency than the charcoal filters of cigarettes currently in the market. In vitro indicators of genotoxic and cytotoxic potential were used to compare the cigarette smoke condensate (particulate phase) or whole cigarette smoke (vapor phase and particulate phase) from cigarettes containing the novel carbon filter with smoke condensate or whole smoke from commercial or prototype cigarettes not containing the novel carbon filter. Ames bacterial mutagenicity, sister chromatid exchange (SCE) in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, and neutral red cytotoxicity assays in CHO cells were utilized to assess the genotoxic and cytotoxic potential of the cigarette smoke condensates. SCE and neutral red cytotoxicity assays were utilized to assess the genotoxic and cytotoxic potential of the whole smoke. As expected, the novel carbon filter did not significantly affect the genotoxic or cytotoxic activity of the smoke condensate, although we did observe that the use of low-nitrogen tobacco reduced the mutagenicity of the condensate in Salmonella typhimurium strain TA98. However, the whole smoke from cigarettes containing the novel carbon filter demonstrated significant reductions in genotoxic and cytotoxic potential compared to cigarettes without the novel carbon filter. The toxicity of the smoke was correlated (r = 0.7662 for cytotoxicity and r = 0.7562 for SCE induction) to the aggregate mass of several vapor phase components (acetone, acetaldehyde, acrolein, acrylonitrile, 1,3-butadiene, ammonia, NOx, HCN, benzene, isoprene, and formaldehyde) in the smoke of the cigarettes utilized in this study. In conclusion, this novel carbon filter, which significantly reduced the amount of carbonyls and other volatiles in mainstream cigarette smoke, resulted in significant reductions in the genotoxic and cytotoxic activity of the smoke as measured by these assays.
Copyright 1997 Society of Toxicology.