Letter from the founder
Qnovia is determined to tackle the world’s leading cause of preventable death and disease by helping the world’s one billion smokers to successfully quit. The WHO estimates that approximately eight million people every year die as a result of smoking and tobacco-related consumption. Qnovia believes it is our moral imperative to help curb this public health crisis.
The smoking cessation landscape is a complicated and contentious topic, largely because the world has resigned itself to think along bifurcated lines: RRPs (Reduced Risk Products) vs. NRTs (Nicotine Replacement Therapies).
Notably, NRTs have suffered from an innovation drought for over two decades. Although RRPs serve an important function in advancing harm reduction, the emphasis needs to be placed on a therapeutic outcome – to curb withdrawal symptoms and to ultimately provide a safe and effective mechanism for cessation.
Today’s therapeutic NRT landscape provides little if any incremental cessation improvement due to the lack of novel innovations aimed at achieving long-term, sustained quit rates. This is why the current NRT cessation improvement rates offer marginal improvements hovering around 4-7%, when compared to simply quitting cold turkey.
No other industry has been beset by such technological abandon, lasting more than two decades—much less a market with one billion active global users and eight million annual preventable deaths. Where might we be today if the mobile phone industry stopped actively innovating way back in 1998?
Not only do today’s NRTs lack the oral-sensory-cue-induced behaviors that smokers have been accustomed to, but these products also simultaneously suffer from poor PK and sensorial values. These are variables that need to be considered when addressing smoking addiction because relapse often occurs when these details are ignored.
In the U.S. alone, over 60% of the roughly 40 million smokers want to actively quit. Yet, with the current available suite of NRT products and abysmal cessation rates, it is Qnovia’s opinion that much more needs to be done.