Knowledgebase of smokeless tobacco products and their chemicals
Harpreet Singh 1  
,   Jasmine Kaur 1,   Arun Sharma 1,   Amit Kumar 2,   Suchitra Kumari 2,   Deeksha Bhartiya 2,   Dhirendra Sinha 2,   Ravi Mehrotra 2
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Indian Council of Medical Research, India
National Institute of Cancer Prevention and Research (NICPR), India
Publication date: 2018-03-01
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2018;16(Suppl 1):A594
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Smokeless tobacco (SLT) products vary in appearance and in their composition of tobacco and non-tobacco chemical constituents thus differing in the mode of consumption. They may be consumed orally (chewed, sucked, dipped, held in the mouth, etc.) or nasally resulting in absorption of nicotine and other chemicals across mucus membranes. It is estimated that tobacco contains roughly 4,000 chemical constituents which undergo various chemical changes till the final SLT product is formed. Some of these are identified as potent carcinogens and are believed to play a crucial role in causing the negative health effects associated with SLT use.

List of chemical compounds present in various SLT products was extracted by exhaustive searching the peer-reviewed research articles, IARC monographs, published books and reports using various combinations of keywords. Chemical composition, pH, moisture and free nicotine content along with brand-wise and country-wise information of each SLT product were recorded. Physicochemical properties and target information of SLT chemicals was extracted from PubChem, ChemSpider and ChEMBL databases.

All the data related to chemical composition of different smokeless tobacco products were compiled in a freely available and user-friendly database. This database contains information about 173 chemicals present in 161 different SLT products. Information regarding types of smokeless tobacco products, their trade or brand names and geographical locations and origin are also provided in this database. It also contains data related to variation of TNSAs (Tobacco-specific nitrosamines), Nicotine, metals, pH, moisture and free nicotine content of various SLT products which determines the amount of nicotine available for absorption.

This database was developed to organize the data on SLT chemicals and their related content for better visualization and retrieval. This is the only one stop, open source, user friendly database that provides comprehensive information about the chemical composition of various smokeless tobacco products.