Newsmakers 2019: Grace Parraga


Today, Western News presents its 10th annual Newsmakers of the Year – a celebration of some of the people, places and things that shaped the year at this institution. Before we start looking ahead to 2020, join us as we take one last look at 2019. Visit the entire list.

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As a lung-imaging scientist, Grace Parraga has seen the devastating effects cigarette and cannabis smokers can have on the quality of life. The popularity of vaping has since added yet another concern to the Medical Biophysics professor’s research focus.

While it may still remain difficult to understand how such serious, life-threatening lung disease can be set off by long-term e-cigarette use, early cases of lung inflammation, and even death, has Parraga concerned over government and other regulators ‘hands-off’ approach to the risk with this latest smoking trend.

As a Tier 1 Canada Research Chair, Lung Imaging to Transform Outcomes, Parraga feels health-care professionals and scientists need to shout out about the dangers, outside of their offices, labs and clinics until things change. The regulation of vaping products, their advertisement and placement in stores need to be reconsidered and tightened up similar to tobacco products, she added.