Smoking rates are dropping, thanks to price increases associated with tobacco taxes, smoking bans, and other evidence-based practices outlined in the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

Even if these practices are scaled up, however, millions of smokers will still suffer death, disease, and disability. Alternative tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, aren’t harmless, but they may be less harmful.

We need to understand whether they could change the course of the smoking epidemic without addicting youth.