FDA Commissioner Gottlieb, who raised alarms about teen vaping, resigns

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Food and Drug Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who used his post to tackle difficult public health issues from youth vaping to opioid addiction – surprising early skeptics worried about his drug industry ties – resigned Tuesday, effective in about a month, according to an administration official.

Gottlieb, who has been commuting weekly to Washington from his home in Connecticut, wants to spend more time with his family, the official said. The 46-year-old physician, millionaire venture capitalist and cancer survivor known for a self-assured, sometimes brash, manner lives in Westport, with his wife and three daughters – nine-year-old twins and a five-year-old.

A senior White House official said Gottlieb had spoken to the president, who liked the FDA chief and did not want him to leave. While Gottlieb had some policy disagreements with the White House, he is well respected, two officials said. The move came as a surprise to some FDA officials, because he has recently hired senior staff and was aggressively pushing a host of new initiatives.

The resignation comes as Gottlieb’s signature issue – youth vaping – is being reviewed by the White House Office of Management and Budget. The plan, detailed by Gottlieb last fall, would sharply restrict the sale of flavored e-cigarettes to curb a surge in underage vaping, which he argues could lead to a whole new generation addicted to nicotine. [Read More @ Washington Post]