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How It All Started
(Dr.) Mold began working in 1955 as a scientist for Liggett & Myers, a tobacco company in North Carolina. His role was to identify cancer causing ingredients in cigarette smoke that lab mice were exposed to. Working alongside other scientists, Mold found the materials that caused cancer on the skin of lab mice and started a project to make a safer cigarette that would exclude or minimise these harmful ingredients.
Liggett hired the A.D. Little Company to try and replicate the mouse-skin painting tests carried out by Ernst L. Wynder in the 1950s that resulted in tumors being produced. Little was able to replicate the test and its results. Shortly after, Liggett started to pursue a safer cigarette.
Project XA, which was headed by James D. Mold, involved adding palladium nitrate to tobacco, which decreased the total tumoricenicity of the smoke without leaving a residual level of palladium in the blood stream when tested on animals.
The palladium additive worked as a catalyst, resulting in more thorough combustion of the byproducts of burned tobacco, much like palladium spark plugs cause more thorough combustion of gasoline in a car engine. The result was smoke that contained fewer tumorigenic substances than a traditional cigarette.
Liggett carried the project to completion, and by 1978 had stocked large amounts of palladium to start commercial manufacture of the cigarettes. Ultimately Liggett pulled the plug on the project, allegedly due to threats from other tobacco companies. The companies allegedly threatened to pull the industry's jointly-funded defense from Liggett if they should market the XA cigarette, amid the fear that such a safer product would indict all other "traditional cigarettes" as being unsafe.
In the end, after spending an estimated $10million on the project, Liggett buried all traces of it in the sand. From 1975 onwards, all internal meetings associated with Project XA had to be attended to by a company lawyer, which shows clearly how worried the tobacco company was about the safety of their products.
originally posted by: Kettu
Just smoke those organic American Spirits that don't contain any additives except organic tobacco. *shrug*
I'm sure there's a "conspiracy" around those too.