The Tobacco Centers of Regulatory Science (TCORS) are the centerpiece of the Tobacco Regulatory Science Program. Made up of scientists with a broad range of expertise (e.g., epidemiology, economics, toxicology, addictions, and marketing), they generate critical research that informs the FDA’s regulation of tobacco products.
Essential elements of the TCORS include:
- At least three theoretically grounded, strong research projects with an integrative theme
- An Administrative Core and other cores as needed
- The ability to conduct developmental/pilot and time-sensitive research
- A program for career development and training.
14 Centers were funded in 2013 (TCORS 1.0) and in 2018, NIH and FDA renewed their commitment to the TCORS program and awarded a second cohort (TCORS 2.0) of Centers to nine institutions.
The TCORS 2.0 program continues to provide data on the following scientific domains related to FDA’s regulatory authority for tobacco products:
- Approaches that test the toxicity of tobacco smoke, aerosol, or specific constituents
- Effects of tobacco product characteristics on addiction and abuse liability
- Short and long term health effects of tobacco products
- Understanding of knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors related to tobacco product use
- Understanding of how to effectively communicate the health effects of tobacco products
- Influences of tobacco marketing
- Understanding of the impact of potential FDA regulatory actions.
The TCORS 2.0 also debuted a new rapid response program allowing for the exploration of novel, time-sensitive research questions identified by NIH and FDA.
In addition, through their career development and training programs, the TCORS 2.0 helps meet the continued need for investigators who have the quality and breadth of experience necessary to conduct cutting-edge research related to the regulation of the manufacture, distribution, and marketing of tobacco products.