Washington-More than 2 1/2 years after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued sweeping regulations covering nicotine and tobacco, the U.S. Supreme Court announced on April 26 that it will hear the appeal of a controversial decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit striking the rules down.

A decision in favor of the FDA could radically change the way cigarettes are made, advertised and sold in the United States. The FDA regulations would permit the agency to limit, or even eliminate, nicotine in cigarettes, and the agency would have authority to impose broad restrictions on the advertising, packaging and marketing of cigarettes.

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