Scientists find thirdhand smoke affects cells in humans

Thirdhand smoke photoUC Riverside-led study is the first to find an association between thirdhand smoke and gene expression in humans

Iqbal Pittalwala

Thirdhand smoke can damage epithelial cells in the respiratory system by stressing cells and causing them to fight for survival, a research team led by scientists at the University of California, Riverside, has found. The finding could assist physicians treating patients exposed to thirdhand smoke.

Thirdhand smoke, or THS, results when exhaled smoke and smoke emanating from the tip of burning cigarettes settles on surfaces such as clothing, hair, furniture, and cars.

“Our data show that cells in humans are affected by thirdhand smoke,” said Prue Talbot, who led the research. “The health effects of THS, have been studied in cultured cells and animal models, but this is the first study to show a direct effect of thirdhand smoke on gene expression in humans.”

For more information, please visit: https://news.ucr.edu/articles/2019/06/28/scientists-find-thirdhand-smoke-affects-cells-humans

About UC Riverside

The University of California, Riverside (www.ucr.edu) is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California’s diverse culture, UCR’s enrollment is more than 24,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of almost $2 billion. To learn more, email news@ucr.edu.

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