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UVM gets 5-year, $19.5M grant to study tobacco - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

UVM gets 5-year, $19.5M grant to study tobacco

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Big bucks are headed to the University of Vermont for tobacco-related research.

Thursday, the Food and Drug Administration and National Institutes of Health awarded UVM nearly $20 million to fund a new tobacco program.

Smoking remains the leading cause of preventable death in this country. So, the federal government is funding research to develop what it calls science-based regulation tobacco. UVM is one of 14 participants that will partner with the FDA to examine the nicotine content in cigarettes over the next five years.

"Our goal is to see if there's a nicotine content level that's below the threshold you need for addiction. And if there is, and we think there is, then the FDA now has the authority to set tobacco products' nicotine content below that level," said Stephen Higgins of the UVM College of Medicine.

Earlier this week, UVM received another $11.5 million federal grant to study unhealthy personal behaviors and chronic disease. The goal of that project is to reduce disease risk factors and prevent premature death.

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