Scroll down to read the participant information sheet and fill out our EOI form if you are interested in taking part.

Alternatively, email or call the study mobile phone 0447 306 132.

We will contact you to organise delivery of the bottle and survey questions.

Participant information sheet

Project title: Real-world excretion factors for tobacco and nicotine products.

Principal Investigators

A/Prof Kathryn Steadman, School of Pharmacy, UQ 

A/Prof Coral Gartner, School of Public Health, UQ

Prof Kevin Thomas, Queensland Alliance for Environmental Health Sciences (QAEHS), UQ (

A/Prof Cobus Gerber, School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia (

Dr Phong Thai, QAEHS, UQ (

Dr Benjamin Tscharke, QAEHS, UQ (

Dr Jake O'Brien, QAEHS, UQ (

Research coordinator

Mr Shakti Shrestha, School of Pharmacy, UQ

Associate investigators – survey team

Dr. Kylie Morphett; School of Public Health, UQ

Dr Daniel Erku; Menzies Health Institute, Griffith University

Student Investigators

Mr Stephen Adam, School of Pharmacy, UQ

Mr Muhaimin Habib, School of Pharmacy, UQ

Mr Qiuda Zheng, Queensland Alliance for Environmental Health Science, UQ

What is the purpose of this study?

We are investigating how the body processes different nicotine products in real-world use situations, including both tobacco and non-tobacco nicotine products. This information will help us to improve a method of measuring how much tobacco and other nicotine products are being used in the community by analysing wastewater (sewage). Wastewater analysis is a non-intrusive and completely anonymous way to measure tobacco and nicotine use at the population level, rather than relying on surveys that collect information from individuals. This allows researchers to look at trends in different nicotine product use, for example if people are switching from smoking to vaping. We are also interested in your views on nicotine-containing product regulation and availability. We need people who smoke, vape with nicotine-containing liquid or use nicotine replacement therapies to answer some questions and collect their urine for 24 hours. The urine sample will be collected to determine the by-products of nicotine processed by the body.

Who can take part?

Anyone who is aged 18 years or older and uses any product that contains nicotine at least once a day:

  • Smoking products: manufactured cigarettes, roll-your-own cigarettes, cigars, water pipes
  • Electronic cigarettes or other vaping devices for use with nicotine liquid
  • Nicotine replacement therapy products: e.g., nicotine gum, lozenges, patches

Who cannot participate?

  • People who regularly smoke substances other than tobacco, such as cannabis, cannot participate in this study.
  • People who cannot commit to collecting all their urine for a 24 hour period and filling in the product use diary should not participate in this study.

What is involved?

This study involves three parts:

  1. Questionnaire: There are tick box questions and short answer questions about you, the nicotine products that you use, your plans regarding quitting smoking (if applicable) and questions related to your knowledge of nicotine products and thoughts on different options for regulating them.
  2. Nicotine diary: You will be asked to write down the type of nicotine products that you use, and when you use them, for three days in a row.
  3. On the third day, collect all the urine that you produce for the next 24 hours in a large bottle that we will give you.

At the end of the 24 hour collection (on the fourth day), you will need to return your completed diary and the bottle of urine as soon as possible after you finish the collection. We recommend organising the time and location of the collection with the research team the day before to make sure they are available to collect these items from you.

Do I have to provide any personal information?

We require your full name, address, and contact number, but this is only so that we can contact you during the study. You’ll be given a participant number when you join the study, and your survey answers and urine will only be identified by your participant number. Your contact details will be kept in a password-protected file that can only be accessed by the researchers. Once the study finishes, all of the information that can identify you (name etc) will be removed so that your data and urine sample will become anonymous and cannot be linked to you.

What will happen to the data?

All information that you provide will be dealt with confidentially. The data will be stored digitally on the secure UQ Research Data manager server, accessible only by the Principal Investigators and Research Coordinator for 5 years after publication of the findings. If you agree, after this project has finished, a small amount of your urine and your answers to the questions will be stored indefinitely within QAEHS facilities, and may be used for other studies in the future. These will be de-identified, which means that future researchers will not know who contributed the sample or data. Future studies may test the urine sample for pharmaceutical and environmental toxins.

Will I have access to the results?

As the data will be de-identified, we will not be able to provide an individual result, but a summary of the group result can be provided after completion of the study.

Is there any risk to me?

There is no foreseen personal risk to you. If you start the study and want to change your mind you are welcome to withdraw from the study at any time during data collection. Once data collection is completed, it will not be possible to withdraw because your data will no longer be linked to your name and so we will not be able to identify which data is yours.

Is there any benefit for me?

We offer you a $100 Coles-Myer gift voucher as a token of our sincere thanks for answering our questions and giving us your 24-hour urine collection. If you are interested in quitting smoking, our study team can provide further information and referral to quit smoking support. Otherwise, there is no direct personal benefit, beyond knowing that you are helping us to understand how our bodies vary in the way they process various nicotine products.

How do I get involved in this study?

Please complete the expression of interest form online or email or call the study mobile phone 0447 306 132. We will contact you to organise delivery or collection of the bottle and survey questions.

This study adheres to the Guidelines of the ethical review process of The University of Queensland and the National Statement on Ethical Conduct in Human Research. Whilst you are free to discuss your participation in this study with the Investigators (see below), if you would like to speak to an officer of the University not involved in the study, you may contact the Ethics Coordinator on 07 3365 3924 / 07 3443 1656 or email

Thank you for your interest in this project.

Fill out our EOI form if you are interested in taking part

Or email or call the study mobile phone 0447 306 132.

We will contact you to organise delivery of the bottle and survey questions.