12/13/22: E-Cigarette Aerosol Exposure: Select BioMarkers in Vape Shop Workers

E-Cigarette Aerosol Exposure: Select BioMarkers in Vape Shop Workers

About the webinar:

Vape shops are currently exempt from smoke-free workplace regulations in California, putting vape shop workers at risk of repeated occupational exposure to e-cigarette (e-cig) aerosols. During this webinar, learners will explore select biomarkers including cotinine, a marker for nicotine as a tracer for e-cig aerosol, and markers of oxidative stress (8-OHdG, 8-isoprostane (8-iso)), system inflammation (human C-reactive protein (CRP)), metal toxicity and antioxidant activity (metallothionein (MT)) quantified in urine samples from thirty vape shop workers. Urine samples were collected from thirty vape shop workers, fifteen vaping and fifteen non-vaping, at the start and end of a shift on two days, which were either the first and last days of a consecutive workday period or two separate days if a subject had a nonconsecutive workday schedule.

Although cotinine increase was only observed in one of the shifts, cotinine significantly increased between the first and last days for non-vaping workers with a consecutive workday schedule. A corresponding upward trend in 8-iso between the first and last days was also observed. Significant association between cotinine and 8-iso varied by vape shop, and was observed in the non-vaping group, suggesting that worksite characteristics, which could include vaping activity during the shift, may increase oxidative stress. Decreases in 8-OHdG, CRP, and MT were observed within both non-vaping worker shifts studied, but changes in these markers among vaping workers were consistent with elevated oxidative stress and inflammatory responses expected from e-cig use during shifts. Significant high associations observed among cotinine and 8-OHdG, CRP, and MT for vaping workers indicate that mainstream e-cig aerosol is more likely to increase oxidative stress, inflammation, and metal toxicity/reactive oxygen species response than exhaled e-cig aerosol. This study provides preliminary data to support future studies to systematically assess and quantify the relative contribution of exhaled e-cig aerosol exposure to health impacts among vape shop workers.

Learning Objectives

At the completion of this activity, the learner will be able to:

  • Characterize changes in select urinary biomarker concentrations measured in vape shop workers within shift and across multiple consecutive work shifts

  • Identify potential predictors of exposure and effect from exhaled e-cig aersol exposure in vape shops

  • Compare biomarker level changes in vape shop workers with tobacco smokers for widely studied nicotine exposure, oxidative stress, and systemic inflammation markers

Speaker: Charlene Nguyen, MS, PhD

Dr. Charlene Nguyen is a graduate of the Southern California Education and Research Center earning her Master’s degree in 2016 and Ph.D. degree in 2022 in Industrial Hygiene from the Department of Environmental Health Sciences at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. Under the supervision of Dr. Yifang Zhu, her graduate research focused on assessing and reducing occupational exposures and indoor air pollutants in nail salons and vape shops. Dr. Nguyen is currently a Program Supervisor at the South Coast Air Quality Management District developing regulations addressing criteria pollutants and toxics from stationary and mobile emission sources.


The Center for Occupational and Environmental Health designates this activity for a maximum of 1.0 Contact Hour. Participants should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation.

Certificates of Completion

Certificates of Completion will be available to webinar participants who are present for the complete, live webinar, and logged in with their registered email address. Call-in attendees are not eligible for certificates at this time - Please download the Zoom app to log in via email on your smartphone whenever possible.

In order to receive your Certificate of Completion, qualified learners must complete the post-webinar evaluation within 7 days of the webinar. A link to the evaluation will be emailed to qualified learners 24 hours after the webinar via no-reply@zoom.us. Qualified learners who submit their evaluation will receive a Certificate of Completion via email, and can also print/save the certificate from their browser after submitting their evaluation.

If you're not able to attend the live presentation, no problem! We record most presentations and will host them on our website provided we have permission to do so. Presentation recordings are not eligible for Certificates of Completion.

Southern California Education and Research Center

About UCLA Center for Occupational and Environmental Health (COEH):

COEH is housed within the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences, the School of Nursing, and the David Geffen School of Medicine. Their mission is to address occupational and environmental health issues through advanced research, teaching, training opportunities and service to the Southern California community, achieving this through collaboration with sister centers and local to international affiliates.


If you require an accommodation for effective communication (ASL interpreting/CART captioning, alternative media formats, etc.) to fully participate in this event, please contact Michelle Meyer at (510) 642-8365 or mmeyer@berkeley.edu(link sends e-mail) with as much advance notice as possible and at least 7-10 days in advance of the event.