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Nicotine dependence is an increasing problem

Press release                                                                                          28th of January 2019

Nicotine dependence is an increasing health problem even if smoking itself shows a declining trend. Nicotine-containing products frequently remain “on” even for years after smoking cessation. 

The most recent innovation of Biohit Oyj, Acetium® lozenge - quit smoking- has been well received particularly among health care professionals because the product does not contain nicotine. Acetium® lozenge has no side effects like traditional nicotine replacement products and prescribed medicines possibly have.  

During its 30-year history, Biohit has designed and launched numerous innovations and taken significant civic responsibility in the development of preventive public health care. At the moment, the company is supporting the measures for smoking intervention, and has recently published a new Smoking Intervention Guide to be distributed eg. to the medical centers. Petra Ranta, an expert nurse in smoking intervention, has given valuable advice in drafting this Guide.    

A list of Petra Ranta’s instructions for preparing the smoking withdrawal:

  • Prepare a list of motivation items, why you want to stop smoking
  • Decide the date of smoking quit
  • Inform your nearest ones about this decision
  • Plan the support measures that suit best for you
  • Read the expert texts and instructions written on the smoking intervention

Acetium® lozenge became on the market in September 2018 and its current availability covers the whole country. The product is available in pharmacies, Kesko supermarkets, Lidl-chain R-kiosks, in shops selling natural (herbal) products, as well as in the markets of Tokmanni, Kärkkäinen, Minimani and Halpahalli chain. In January 2019, the sales extended to markets of S-Group and Prisma.

Using Acetium is simple and safe. It is not classified as a medicine and does not require a prescription. The best results are achieved with regular use of the lozenges during smoking for 3-6 months. In some smokers, favorable results are achieved even in a few weeks.

Made in Finland

Acetium® lozenge is an innovation developed and manufactured in Finland, and it is devoid of the side effects of conventional nicotine replacement products or prescription medicines. The product is patent protected in several countries.

Effectiveness proven in clinical studies

The effectiveness of Acetium® lozenges in smoking intervention has been evaluated in two clinical trials1, 2. Regular use of the lozenge during smoking increases the likelihood of quitting by a factor of about 1.5 compared to a placebo 2. Its effect is equivalent to that of nicotine replacement therapy products.

“According to smokers who participated in the clinical trial, the use of Acetium® results in a reduction of the reward obtained from the smoking as well as in a change of the cigarette taste which facilitates the cessation of smoking 2,” explains Mr. Semi Korpela, CEO of Biohit Oyj.

Acetium® lozenge contains L-cysteine (a natural amino acid) that binds carcinogen acetaldehyde dissolved in the saliva from cigarette smoke 3. The lozenge also contains a small amount of xylitol to reduce the production of acetaldehyde by bacteria in the mouth and improves oral hygiene in general.

What is acetaldehyde?

Acetaldehyde is a class one carcinogen comparable for instance to asbestos and benzene. Normal saliva does not contain acetaldehyde 3. Acetaldehyde is a carcinogen4 compounded in mouth also of alcohol, is the most harmful substance in tobacco smoke. The Acetium® lozenge eliminates up to 90 % of smoke-derived acetaldehyde in the saliva.

Learn more:  (the English version of the smoking cessation guide is available on the site)

User testimonials:

Additional information:
CEO Semi Korpela, Biohit Oyj, tel. +358 40 573 7701

Biohit Oyj is a globally operating Finnish biotechnology company. Biohit’s mission is “Innovating for Health” – we produce innovative products and services to promote research and early diagnosis. Biohit is headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, and has subsidiaries in Italy and the UK. Biohit's Series B share (BIOBV) is quoted on Nasdaq Helsinki in the Small cap/Healthcare group.


1. Syrjänen K et al. Elimination of cigarette smoke-derived acetaldehyde in saliva by slow-release L-cysteine lozenge is an effective new method to assist smoking cessation. A randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled intervention. Anticancer Res.  2016;36:2297-2306.

2. Syrjänen K et al. Slow-release L-cysteine (Acetium) lozenge is an effective new method in smoking cessation. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled intervention. Anticancer Res 2017;37:3639-3648.

3. Salaspuro VJ et al. Eliminating carcinogenic acetaldehyde by cysteine from saliva during smoking. Cancer Epid Biomark Prev 2006;15:146-149.

4 Secretan B et al. WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer Monograph Working Group. A review of human carcinogens- Part E: tobacco, areca nut, alcohol, coal smoke, and salted fish. Lancet Oncol 10:1033-1034.

Monday, January 28, 2019 - 07:30