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Exposure to third-hand smoke can be deadly: study

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Published : 2014-02-04 14:15
Updated : 2014-02-04 14:15

Second-hand smoke has long been known to cause health problems, but the third-hand smoke is also deadly, a new study has suggested.

(123RF)

Third-hand smoke is defined as the second-hand smoke that is soaked into the surfaces, objects and other things around people.

A research team from the University of California, Riverside, studied the effects of third-hand smoke on several organ systems in mice.

The study found that third-hand smoke led to significant damage to the liver and lungs in mice, as well as increased wound healing time, which suggests that the third-hand smoke can also adversely impact humans.

“Children in environments where smoking is or has been allowed are at significant risk for suffering from multiple short-term and longer health problems, many of which may not manifest fully until later in life,” Manuela Martins-Green, a professor of cell biology who led the study, said in a statement Monday.

The researchers noted that third-hand smoke persists in houses, hotel rooms and other living spaces long after smokers move out, which heightens the risks of long-term health problems.

Tobacco remains a worldwide cause of serious health problems for smokers and non-smokers alike, estimated to affect some 1.5 billion people globally.

The study was published in the journal PLOS ONE.

By Ock Hyun-ju, Intern reporter (laeticia.ock@heraldcorp.com)

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