Following are links to articles about scientific research into smoking and tobacco.
Exposure to a single pro-smoking media message increases college-aged students' risk of using tobacco for seven days, providing new clues about the influence of media on smoking, according to a new RAND Corporation study.
Smokers of long or ultralong cigarettes are at greater risk for lung and oral cancer than smokers of regular and king-size cigarettes, according to researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health, Center for Global Tobacco Control.
Smoking can increase the effect of inflammation on X-ray damage in people with ankylosing spondylitis by as much as five times. And, the increase is as much as 13 times higher in men with the disease who smoke than women who don't smoke, according to research presented this week at the American College of Rheumatology Annual Meeting in San Diego.
Ankylosing spondylitis is a type of inflammatory arthritis characterized by joint stiffness, pain and extra bone growth that can result in partial or complete fusion of the spine. The disease typically affects young men and may lead to work disability and spinal deformity.
So, what is known about electronic cigarettes?
*Manufacturers claim that electronic cigarettes are a safe alternative to conventional cigarettes.*The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has questioned the safety of these products.*FDA analysis of two popular brands found variable amounts of nicotine and traces of toxic chemicals, including known cancer-causing substances (carcinogens).*The FDA has issued a warning about potential health risks associated with electronic cigarettes, but is not yet regulating their use or standards of manufacture.
A study published today in the American Journal of Psychiatry suggests an association between smoking during pregnancy and increased risk for developing bipolar disorder (BD) in adult children. Researchers at the New York State Psychiatric Institute and the Department of Epidemiology at the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University, in collaboration with scientists at the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research in Oakland, California, evaluated offspring from a large cohort of pregnant women who participated in the Child Health and Development Study (CHDS) from 1959-1966. The study was based on 79 cases and 654 comparison subjects. Maternal smoking during pregnancy was associated with a twofold increased risk of BD in their offspring.
The researchers separated pregnant rats into two groups. One group received a dose of nicotine injected under their skin daily -- a model for smoking in humans -- starting when they were 6 days pregnant until 21 days after they gave birth. Their pups were allowed to breastfeed as much as they wanted until they weaned at 3 weeks old. Another group of pregnant rats received only a placebo injected under their skin for the same time period. The researchers used rat pups from these pregnancies to breed subsequent generations of rats. When they reached the third generation born from the original rat moms -- their great-grandchildren -- they performed a series of tests on these animals to look for signs of asthma. They exposed these animals to a lung irritant to see how much it narrowed their airways, a test similar to one used to diagnose asthma in people. They also tested how the animals' windpipes responded to a chemical that caused them to contract, another indicator of asthma. No rats except for the pregnant moms were ever directly exposed to nicotine.
As the NHS prepares to launch Stoptober 2013, new research published in Psychology, Health & Medicine has found another reason to quit smoking -- giving up smoking improves sleep. Smoking is a leading cause of preventable death and while the numerous health problems directly caused by smoking are well documented, less is known about the effects of smoking on sleep.
The risk of becoming a smoker among young adults who have never smoked is high: 14% will become smokers between the ages of 18 and 24, and three factors predict this behaviour. “Smoking initiation also occurs among young adults, and in particular among those who are impulsive, have poor grades, or who use alcohol regularly,” said Jennifer O'Loughlin, a Professor at the University of Montreal School of Public Health (ESPUM) and author of a Journal of Adolescent Health study published in August. O’Loughlin believes smoking prevention campaigns should also target young adults aged 18 to 24.'
Millions of people who are obese and smoke tobacco may face additional health problems -- including their responses to common prescription medicines -- that extend beyond the well-known links with cancer, heart attacks and stroke, according to a new report.
New research from the University of Adelaide has shown for the first time that pregnant women who smoke as well as having asthma are greatly increasing the risk of complications for themselves and their unborn children.
A total of nearly 200,000 subjects were included in the researchers' study of the causality between obesity/overweight and diseases related to cardiovascular conditions and metabolism, which is being published for the first time in PLOS Medicine. The goal was to determine whether obesity as such is the actual cause of these diseases or whether obesity is simply a marker of something else in the subject's lifestyle that causes the disease.