AHA Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center™

Tobacco Centers of Regulatory Science (TCORS)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), as part of an on-going interagency partnership, awarded a total of up to $53 million to fund tobacco-related research in fiscal year 2013 to create 14 Tobacco Centers of Regulatory Science (TCORS).

Despite decades of work to reduce tobacco use in the United States, it continues to be the leading cause of preventable death and disease. A new, first-of-its-kind regulatory science tobacco program, TCORS is designed to generate research to inform the regulation of tobacco products to protect public health.

The TCORS program brings together investigators from across the country to aid in the development and evaluation of tobacco product regulations. Each TCORS application identified a targeted research goal. Taken together, the TCORS sites will increase knowledge across the full spectrum of basic and applied research on tobacco and addiction. The program also provides young investigators with training opportunities to ensure the development of the next generation of tobacco regulatory scientists.

The American Heart Association is one of the 14 centers to receive funding from the TCORS grant. As a result of this grant, the AHA Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center (A-TRAC) has been formed.

The TCORS is a partnership to help inform tobacco product regulation and address the research priorities related to the regulatory authority of the FDA’s Center for Tobacco Products. The partnership will:  
  • Rigorously evaluate the cardiovascular effects of cigarette smoke and smokeless tobacco.
  • Assess whether the biomarkers of cardiovascular injury also reflect tobacco-induced cardiovascular damage in humans, and if these biomarkers predict subclinical cardiovascular disease and major cardiovascular clinical events.
  • Use the community-based participatory research infrastructure of the Jackson Heart Study, HCHS-SOL and an Appalachian school-based cohort to examine behavior in smokers and smokeless tobacco users. It will also look at perceptions about tobacco products, FDA regulation and tobacco advertising. 
The Tobacco Centers Of Regulatory Science (TCORS) are funded by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as a part of an on-going interagency partnership. The FDA and the NIH are awarding over $273 million to 14 TCORS across the country over the next five years. The American Heart Association is one of the 14 centers to receive funding from the TCORS grant and this led to the formation of the AHA Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center (A-TRAC).

The research supported by the new initiative will focus on seven FDA tobacco-related research interest areas:
  1. Diversity of tobacco products;
  2. Reducing addiction;
  3. Reducing toxicity and carcinogenicity;
  4. Adverse health consequences;
  5. Communications;
  6. Marketing of tobacco products;
  7. Economies and policies.

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