Opposition is growing against Philip Morris International’s modified-risk application for iQOS. Ten U.S. senators–all Democrats–have sent a letter to Scott Gottlieb, the commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) asking the agency to reject the big tobacco company’s application that would allow it to sell its heat-not-burn device iQOS in the U.S. and market it as being less harmful than traditional cigarettes.
The letter is in response to a recent review conducted by a panel of health advisers that brought into question iQOS’ modified-risk claims [read more here]. Those signing the letter include senators Elizabeth Warren, Dick Durbin, and Richard Blumenthal. The Feb. 7 letter advises Gottlieb and the FDA not to rush new products to market to fit the FDA’s new policy of seeking safer alternatives to traditional cigarettes, saying products like iQOS lack proper study and evidence supporting “such product will reduce the risk of disease, result in a larger number of smokers quitting, and not increase youth tobacco use.” It also brings into question the sincerity of the tobacco industry, calling out its history of “deceitful history of marketing products under the guise of lower risk.”