From Our 2010 Archives
Lung Damage From Secondhand Smoke Observed in Rats
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WEDNESDAY, Sept. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Secondhand smoke appears to trigger a complex inflammatory response in the lungs, a study in rats reveals.
The researchers exposed the animals to secondhand smoke five times per week for two or four months. The exposures occurred in two three-hour shifts twice a day, separated by a two-hour break.
"This is much like what a human would be exposed to at a bar or casino," Adelheid Kratzer, an investigator in the pulmonary and critical care division in the department of medicine at the University of Colorado-Denver, said in an American Physiological Society news release.
Two months of exposure to secondhand smoke was enough to cause significant changes in the rats' lungs, and those changes were even more notable after four months.
Among the changes the investigators found were:
The findings, presented at the American Physiological Society conference held last week in Westminster, Colo., may help efforts to develop new ways to treat lung damage caused by secondhand smoke, the researchers said.
-- Robert Preidt
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SOURCE: American Physiological Society, news release, Aug. 26, 2010