The U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have awarded funding for a new Center for Rapid Surveillance of Tobacco (CRST). Through rapid surveillance and reporting of information, CRST will enhance the Center for Tobacco Products (CTP) and the research community’s ability to understand, document and quantify changes in the tobacco product marketplace and tobacco use patterns.
Research results from the CRST are expected to generate findings and data that are directly relevant in informing the FDA’s regulation of the manufacture, distribution and marketing of tobacco products to protect public health. In particular, the CRST will support more time-sensitive data collection, analysis and reporting—making potentially actionable information available before more traditional data collection methods.
“Given the rapidly evolving tobacco landscape, it’s critical that we have nimble surveillance tools that can keep pace to best protect public health,” said Brian King, director of the FDA’s CTP. “This new center is another important addition to our surveillance toolbox to help identify emerging issues and to inform timely action.”
The CRST is supported through the Tobacco Regulatory Science Program, an interagency partnership between the NIH and CTP to foster tobacco regulatory research. After undergoing a competitive funding announcement, the CRST is being administered through a cooperative agreement under award number U01CA278695. The work is led by Rutgers Center of Excellence in Rapid Surveillance of Tobacco with substantial involvement from a large collaborative network that triangulates multiple data sources, federal scientific staff at CDC, NIH and CTP as well as external advisors with relevant expertise.