AACR Applauds the Appointment of Brian A. King, PhD, MPH, as Director of the FDA Center for Tobacco Products
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), which consists of more than 50,000 laboratory, translational, and clinical researchers; other health care professionals; population scientists; and patient advocates, enthusiastically supports the appointment of Brian A. King, PhD, MPH, as the next director of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Center for Tobacco Products.
“The country owes a great debt to Dr. King for his work at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in combating the youth e-cigarette epidemic and contributing to a healthier nation,” said Roy S. Herbst, MD, PhD, chair of the AACR Tobacco Products and Cancer Subcommittee. “Dr. King’s experience will be invaluable in leading the Center for Tobacco Products as it continues its important work to protect the public and combat the harm of nicotine addiction.”
King previously served as the deputy director of research translation in the CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health. More recently, he has served as chief science officer of the CDC’s COVID-19 response and the executive editor of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). King has served in an ex officio capacity on the AACR Tobacco Products and Cancer Subcommittee and participated in many past AACR congressional briefings, including a 2019 briefing titled “E-cigarettes and Nicotine Addiction: A Potential Public Health Crisis for Youth and Young Adults.” This important briefing shined a spotlight on the troubling rise in e-cigarette use among youth and young adults, shared the current science and evidence gaps, and highlighted the need for continued research on these new and evolving tobacco products.
“Tobacco use accounts for 30 percent of all cancer deaths and incidence and is associated with 18 different types of cancer, most notably lung cancer,” said Margaret Foti, PhD, MD (hc), chief executive officer of the AACR. “Dr. King’s expertise and highly relevant experience in understanding how nicotine addiction takes hold and the damage it poses to public health will be an enormous asset to the FDA, particularly with its proposals to ban menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars, and to regulate e-cigarettes. The AACR looks forward to continuing to work with Dr. King to improve the health of all Americans.”