Determination of Pyrazines in WTS, Bowl Water and Heated Shisha
My research aims to provide a compartmental analysis of pyrazines contained in and generated by waterpipe tobacco smoking. This includes added flavorants, pyrazines generated by heating tobacco, pyrazines produced by Maillard reactions, and those filtered out by bowl water. I have worked on developing methods for extracting and concentrating pyrazines from these “compartments,” and I have analyzed these samples using gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS).
Previous research suggests that the presence of pyrazines positively reinforces the consumption of tobacco, both by masking the harsh flavor of the tobacco stems and through chemical processes that force more nicotine into the gas phase. This allows nicotine to cross the blood-brain barrier more readily, thusly increasing the addictiveness of tobacco products. Pyrazines are both added to shisha and produced in a typical waterpipe tobacco smoking session, and they can have these effects even in small concentrations. Developing a method that can analyze for pyrazines in small concentrations is therefore of vital importance in studying the health risks of waterpipe tobacco smoking.