Study: Third hand smoke causes damage to human cells

19 Mar

Some children consider smoking a rite of passage into adolescence. According to Tobacco Facts most teenage smoking starts early. Among the statistics cited at Tobacco Facts are the following:

Each day 3,000 children smoke their first cigarette.
Tobacco use primarily begins in early adolescence, typically by age 16.
At least 3 million adolescents are smokers.
20 percent of American teens smoke.
Almost all first use occurs before high school graduation.
Roughly 6 million teens in the US today smoke despite the knowledge that it is addictive and leads to disease.
Of the 3,000 teens who started smoking today, nearly 1,000 will eventually die as a result from smoking.
Of every 100,000 15 year old smokers, tobacco will prematurely kill at least 20,000 before the age of 70.
Adolescent girls who smoke and take oral birth control pills greatly increase their chances of having blood clots and strokes.
According to the Surgeon’s General, Teenagers who smoke were:
* Three times more likely to use alcohol.
* Eight times are likely to smoke marijuana.
* And 22 times more likely to use Cocaine.
Although only 5 percent of high school smokers said that they would definitely be smoking five years later, close to 75 percent were still smoking 7 to 9 years later.
Kids who smoke experience changes in the lungs and reduced lung growth, and they risk not achieving normal lung function as an adult.
A person who starts smoking at age 13 will have a more difficult time quitting, has more health-related problems and probably will die earlier than a person who begins to smoke at age 21.
Kids who smoke have significant health problems, including cough and phlegm production, decreased physical fitness and unfavorable lipid profile.
If your child’s best friends smoke, then your youngster is 13 times more likely to smoke than if his or her friends did not smoke.
Adolescents who have two parents who smoke are more than twice as likely as youth without smoking parents to become smokers.
More than 90 percent of adult smokers started when they were teens.

It is important to prevent teens from beginning to smoke because of health issues and the difficulty many smokers have in quitting the habit. Research indicates that thirdhand smoke is an increasing danger and even those who do not smoke are at risk.

David McNamee reported in the Medical News Today article, Thirdhand smoke ‘damages DNA and may cause cancer’:

Evidence presented at the 247th National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society warns that thirdhand smoke damages DNA, attaching to it in a way that may result in cancer.
The talk, titled “Thirdhand smoke causes DNA damage in human cells,” was presented by Bo Hang, PhD, a scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California, who in 2013 published a study of the same name in the journal Mutagenesis.
Thirdhand smoke – exposure to the toxic compounds of tobacco smoke from surfaces and dust in a room or car where someone has previously been smoking – is a relatively recent area of study, with the first scientific research into the subject appearing in 2009.
In 2010, a consortium was formed in California to investigate the effects of thirdhand smoke. This consortium funded Dr. Hang’s research and has been working to understand the public health implications of thirdhand smoke.
Researchers have found that many of the 4,000 pollutants from smoke have been identified in carpets, walls, furniture and dust, as well as on the clothing, hair and skin of smokers. People can be exposed to these pollutants by inhaling, touching or ingesting them.
But some of the surface-absorbed residue from tobacco smoke can also produce additional toxicants, undergoing a chemical transformation when it interacts with compounds in the atmosphere.
What is ‘NNA’ and why is it of concern?
One of these secondary compounds is 4-(Methylnitrosamino)-4-(3-pyridyl)-butanal, or “NNA” for short. Hang and his colleagues have found that NNA attaches itself to DNA to create a cancer-causing chemical.
Both NNA and another compound called 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone), or “NNK,” break down DNA. This damage to DNA can lead to cell growth becoming uncontrolled and the formation of cancerous tumors.
Though compelling, this research is still in an early phase. Dr. Hang thinks that just as it took a long time to conclusively establish a connection between firsthand smoke and cancer, it could be years before the connections between thirdhand smoke, NNA and cancer are conclusive….


Thirdhand smoke causes DNA damage in human cells.
Hang B1, Sarker AH, Havel C, Saha S, Hazra TK, Schick S, Jacob P 3rd, Rehan VK, Chenna A, Sharan D, Sleiman M, Destaillats H, Gundel LA.
Author information
• 1Life Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA.
Exposure to thirdhand smoke (THS) is a newly described health risk. Evidence supports its widespread presence in indoor environments. However, its genotoxic potential, a critical aspect in risk assessment, is virtually untested. An important characteristic of THS is its ability to undergo chemical transformations during aging periods, as demonstrated in a recent study showing that sorbed nicotine reacts with the indoor pollutant nitrous acid (HONO) to form tobacco-specific nitrosamines (TSNAs) such as 4-(methylnitrosamino)-4-(3-pyridyl)butanal (NNA) and 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK). The goal of this study was to assess the genotoxicity of THS in human cell lines using two in vitro assays. THS was generated in laboratory systems that simulated short (acute)- and long (chronic)-term exposures. Analysis by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry quantified TSNAs and common tobacco alkaloids in extracts of THS that had sorbed onto cellulose substrates. Exposure of human HepG2 cells to either acute or chronic THS for 24h resulted in significant increases in DNA strand breaks in the alkaline Comet assay. Cell cultures exposed to NNA alone showed significantly higher levels of DNA damage in the same assay. NNA is absent in freshly emitted secondhand smoke, but it is the main TSNA formed in THS when nicotine reacts with HONO long after smoking takes place. The long amplicon-quantitative PCR assay quantified significantly higher levels of oxidative DNA damage in hypoxanthine phosphoribosyltransferase 1 (HPRT) and polymerase β (POLB) genes of cultured human cells exposed to chronic THS for 24h compared with untreated cells, suggesting that THS exposure is related to increased oxidative stress and could be an important contributing factor in THS-mediated toxicity. The findings of this study demonstrate for the first time that exposure to THS is genotoxic in human cell lines.
[PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]
[Available on 2014/7/1]

See, Major ‘third-hand smoke’ compound causes DNA damage and potentially cancer

Smoking is not only deadly for the smoker, but for others as well.


What is thirdhand smoke, and why is it a concern?

Thirdhand Smoke

Thirdhand Smoke: A Select Bibliography of Recent Studies

A History of Tobacco

American Lung Association’s Smoking and Teens Fact Sheet Women and Tobacco Use
African Americans and Tobacco Use
American Indians/Alaska Natives and Tobacco Use
Hispanics and Tobacco Use
Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders and Tobacco Use
Military and Tobacco Use
Children/Teens and Tobacco Use
Older Adults and Tobacco Use

Center for Young Women’s Health A Guide for Teens

Kroger Resources Teens and Smoking

Teens Health’s Smoking

Quit Smoking

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr.

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:


Dr. Wilda Reviews ©

Dr. Wilda ©

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: