ST. CHARLES — A suburban St. Louis school district alleges in a lawsuit that a leading e-cigarette maker harmed its students through deceptive marketing and misconduct.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the Francis Howell School District filed the lawsuit Monday in federal court against JUUL Labs. The suit says JUUL's vaping products cause "significant and ongoing nicotine abuse." The district says there were 248 nicotine-related infractions last year, up from 54 five years ago. Additional staff has been hired to monitor bathrooms and hallways for vaping.

Francis Howell is one of several school districts to sue as health officials investigate a mysterious and sometimes fatal lung ailment that has affected more than 1,000 people.

JUUL has said it doesn't market to youth and its products are meant to be an alternative to smoking.

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