Print 95 comment(s) - last by PitViper007.. on Jun 30 at 12:36 PM

A new study shows that smoking tobacco cigarettes, like consuming alcohol, can lead to severe brain damage, though the mechanism is different. The study also suggests that second hand smoke exposure can also lead to brain damage.  (Source: The New York Times)

Perhaps that Guiness World Book Record for most cigarettes smoked wasn't such a good idea, now that the brain damage smoking tobacco causes is known...  (Source: Guiness World Book of Records)
Move over alcohol, brain damage has a new buddy

New research is set to be published in the July issue of the Journal of Neurochemistry that looks to offer yet another damning medical argument against smoking and allowing second hand smoke in public locations.  The new report finds that Tobacco smoke contains a compound which can cause brain damage.

The new study examined NNK, a procarinogen.  NNK is a toxic derivative of nicotine produced when the chemical is cured in preparation for use in cigarettes.  NNK is not found in other smoked drugs, such as cannabis.

Before the study it was thought that the compound could be damaging to the body, but it was unclear how damaging it was.  In the study, performed by Debapriya Ghosh and Dr Anirban Basu from the Indian National Brain Research Center (NBRC), it was found that the compound caused white blood cells in the central nervous system to attack healthy cells causing severe neurological damage.

Unlike alcohol or other forms of drug abuse, the drug does not impact brain tissue directly via oxidation or receptor damage.  Rather, it triggers an inflammatory immunological response that is believed to lead to Multiple Sclerosis and other brain diseases.

Both with in vivo, in mice, and in vitro tests, the researchers discovered that the compound elevated proinflammatory signaling proteins, proinflammatory effector proteins and other stress related proteins, and increased levels of proinflammatory cytokines, which act as molecular messengers between cells.  These factors led to increased activity by microglia, the brain's white blood cells responsible for attacking intruders.

The microglia turned on healthy cells, due to the increased level of these compounds.  States Professor Ghosh, "Considering the extreme economical and disease burden of neuroinflammation related disorders, it is extremely important from a medical, social and economic point of view to discover if NNK in tobacco causes neuroinflammation.  Our findings prove that tobacco compound NNK can activate microglia significantly which subsequently harms the nerve cells.

While most studies have focused on health threats from smoked tobacco, NNK is also present in chewing tobacco, helping make a stronger case against its use.  NNK is present in 20-310 nanograms in cigarettes, but is also can be present in concentrations as high as 26 nanograms in smoke filmed rooms.  This report adds more evidence that second hand smoke may damage non-smokers' health.

Concludes Professor Ghosh, "This research sheds light on the processes that lead to nerve cell damage in those who smoke cigarettes or consume tobacco products on regular basis."

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: No true need for a study.
By choadenstein on 6/26/2009 9:52:45 AM , Rating: 5
List of Notable Smokers:

Barack Obama
Albert Einstein
Thomas Edison
Alexander Graham Bell
Robert Oppenheimer
Edwin Hubble
Winston Churchill
Franklin D Roosevelt
Bill Clinton
King Hussein of Jordan
John F Kennedy
Gerald Ford
George Orwell
Oscar Wilde
Jean-Paul Sartre
JR Tolkien
J.K. Rowling
CS Lewis
James Dean
Demi Moore
Keith Richards
Elizabeth Taylor
Sophia Loren
Kate Winslet
Luciano Pavarotti
John Wayne
Mel Gibson
Russell Crowe
Frank Sinatra
Robbie Williams
Marilyn Monroe
John Lennon
Al Pacino
Robert De Niro
Eddie Van Halen
Vincent Van Gogh
Jeanne Calment, the world’s oldest ever person who died aged 122, only quit smoking aged 117
Alfred Hitchcock
Pablo Picasso
Che Guevara
Aaron Spelling
David Bowie
Johnny Depp
Joaquin Phoenix
Joseph Stalin
Jennifer Aniston
Brad Pitt
Angelina Jolie
Ben Affleck
Kate Hudson
Goldie Hawn
Colin Farrell
Sammy Davis Jr
George Harrison
Audrey Hepburn
Lyndon B. Johnson
Leonard Nimoy
Jimmy Page
Sean Penn
Richard Pryor
Frank Zappa
Fidel Castro
Joan Collins
Bill Cosby
Danny De Vito
Sigmund Freud
George Gershwin
Ulysses S. Grant
Saddam Hussein
Samuel L Jackson
David Letterman
Pope St. Pius X
Pope John XXIII


Lack of ambition, willpower? narrow-minded, lack drive?

You're an idiot.

RE: No true need for a study.
By jimbojimbo on 6/26/2009 10:56:10 AM , Rating: 1
That list makes no sense. First off your first name makes it sound like it's a list of reasons never to smoke! Then most of the rest are actors. So what makes an actor so great that they're a great influence because they smoke?

RE: No true need for a study.
By choadenstein on 6/26/2009 11:28:58 AM , Rating: 4
Barack Obama, Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Alexander Graham Bell, Robert Oppenheimer, Edwin Hubble, Winston Churchill, Franklin D Roosevelt, Bill Clinton, King Hussein of Jordan, John F Kennedy, Gerald Ford, George Orwell, Oscar Wilde, Jean-Paul Sartre, JR Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, CS Lewis, Keith Richards, Luciano Pavarotti, Frank Sinatra , Robbie Williams, John Lennon, Eddie Van Halen, Vincent Van Gogh, Jeanne Calment, Alfred Hitchcock, Pablo Picasso, Che Guevara, Aaron Spelling, David Bowie , Joseph Stalin, Sammy Davis Jr , George Harrison, Lyndon B. Johnson, Jimmy Page, Richard Pryor , Frank Zappa, Fidel Castro, Sigmund Freud, George Gershwin, Ulysses S. Grant, Saddam Hussein, Pope St. Pius X, Pope John XXIII

Non-Actors: ~43 (39*)
(*the 4 underlined people are not actors, but have been in a significant amount of movies and might be considered actors)

Bill Cosby, Danny De Vito, Audrey Hepburn, Samuel L Jackson, David Letterman, Leonard Nimoy, Jennifer Aniston, John Wayne, Joan Collins, James Dean, Demi Moore, Elizabeth Taylor, Sophia Loren, Kate Winslet, Mel Gibson, Russell Crowe, Marilyn Monroe, Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Johnny Depp, Joaquin Phoenix, Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Ben Affleck, Kate Hudson, Goldie Hawn, Colin Farrell, Sean Penn

Actors: ~29 (* 33 - see above)

43 v. 29 = Most of the rest are NOT actors.
(* or 39 v. 33).

RE: No true need for a study.
By technoburg on 6/27/2009 12:54:00 PM , Rating: 2
Ronald Regan was left off this list on purpose or by accident? He was an actor and appeared in cigarette commercials too advocating the use of cigarettes!
However this was before he joined the Repugnican Party and started getting into politics.

RE: No true need for a study.
By mindless1 on 6/26/2009 5:01:24 PM , Rating: 2
Obviously the list includes actors because they are the most popular due to Americans spending so much time watching TV in the pre-popularized web era.

If the list were instead the top 100 scientists of the last century would as many people recognize the names beyond the first 10 or so? What if the list were the top 100 worldwide leaders?

Nobody is saying they're a great influence BECAUSE they smoke, rather it is evidence against the commmon misconceptions that people use to randomly judge each other instead of focusing on their own mistakes however simple they might be (like yours that this list somehow supposed that makes them a great influence or a need to divert the topic on this inappropriate tangent).

RE: No true need for a study.
By Chaser on 6/26/2009 11:05:29 AM , Rating: 1
Funny how most the people on your list were around when tobacco advertising was like this (from a KOOL ad in the 60's):

"Does winter make your head feel stuffy? Steam-heated rooms parch your throat? Heavy smoking 'brown' your taste? Then you've three extra reasons for changing to KOOLS.
They're mildly mentholated. Light up and feel that instant refreshment. Smoke deep; the choice Turkish-Domestic tobacco flavor is all there. Smoke long; your throat and tongue stay cool and smooth, your mouth clean and fresh.
Change to KOOLS. It's a change for the better."

You don't have Yul Brynner on your who made this commercial from his death bed pleading for people not to smoke.

Yeah. Anyone that surrenders control of their body and sells their health off towards non smoking tobacco exec profits is acting like a complete idiot.

RE: No true need for a study.
By choadenstein on 6/26/2009 11:15:36 AM , Rating: 4
You and the poster above you clearly missed the point of the rebuttal.

OP Said:
You can clearly see in a smoker the lack of ambition, the lack of willpower, and stubbornness, this just finally proves my idea that smokers brains are deeply effected by the chemical toxins involved. Clearly smokers are some of the most stubborn, narrow minded people, with a lack of drive, its almost like the toxins over the years cause them to be less of what they could really be, achieve less than they were once capable of. It makes them stubborn in daily activities, I work in an office and notice that they are usually slower to adapt, and are slower to learn.

The OP was saying that smokers lack drive, ambition, willpower, etc... My response had nothing to do lung cancer or other health concerns. The list was meant to represent the fact that smokers do not inherently lack or lose the certain positive personality traits due to smoking.

Also, the list is far from all actors. There are half-a-dozen US presidents, over a dozen heads of state, inventors, scientist, authors and even a pope or two.

Reading - it's fundamental.

RE: No true need for a study.
By Starcub on 6/26/2009 4:42:00 PM , Rating: 2
As someone who spent a few years waiting tables at various restuarants, I can vouch for the stubborness trait in smokers. In addition, there are skin complexion and vocal quality differences. Everyone knows that smoking causes all kinds of bad things.

Really, your list is rediculous. Someone could just as easily put together another list of people who don't smoke. And before about 50 years ago, it was the norm for people to smoke 'cause they didn't know what they do now.

Honestly, do you people get paid for making up stupid arguements to sell rediculous ideas? Are you folks trying to start a hit count race with this site?

My dad let me take a puff on his cigarette when I was about 6 and I gagged. Never smoked at all until I went to college, and even then only a few times to try a cigar and a joint. I would have liked to smoke more joints, but I had no trouble quiting after about two -- same with gambling.Quite frankly, I don't see what's so complelling about cigarettes, or why people claim it's hard to quit. I think there is a serious lack of self control in such people.

RE: No true need for a study.
By proneax on 6/27/2009 2:15:25 AM , Rating: 2
agreed. In my experience, those that start smoking have a lack of self-esteem, are depressed, are uneducated or lack self-control.

No-one in his/her right mind chooses to become addicted to cigarettes. If you believe you have made this conscious choise, you are delusional due to your addiction or have some other serious issues.

Want to feel a high? Go run 2 miles, go to the gym. It feels great and improves your health instead of destroying it.

RE: No true need for a study.
By technoburg on 6/27/2009 12:44:58 PM , Rating: 2
You left out one: Ronald Regan

"If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." -- Scientology founder L. Ron. Hubbard

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki