Tag Archives: bacteria exposure

Cigarettes are Addictive and Infectious

Everyone knows cigarettes are extremely dangerous and addictive.

An American researcher wanted to also draw attention to how infectious the tobacco in cigarettes is, as the substance is laden with bacteria.

In fact, there is so much bacteria present in tobacco, Amy Sapkoto believes the number of germs could certainly be compared to the number of toxic chemicals and carcinogens that have been isolated.

The Theory

Environmental scientist from the University of Maryland, Amy Sapkota, conducted a study that looked at the bacteria found in tobacco and whether or not these bacteria could possibly be a source of infection for a person who comes in contact with it. Sapkota conjectured that simply touching a cigarette or putting one unlit in the mouth can encourage an impairment of bodily functions.

Types of Bacteria Found

The researchers examined the genetic makeup of the bacteria they were able to isolate from the tobacco under sterile conditions. The genetic material of almost 800 different bacteria was compared to the bacteria in the four most smoked brands of cigarettes in Western countries: Marlboro Red, Camel, Kool Filter Kings, and Lucky Strike Original Red.

A few of the bacteria found in the cigarettes researched in this study include:

  • Campylobacter, a germ leading to food poisoning and Guillan-Barre Syndrome;
  • Clostridium, another germ causing food poisoning as well as leading to pneumonia;
  • Corynebacterium, another pneumonia-triggering bacteria;
  • E.Coli;
  • Klebsiella, associated with pneumonia and urinary tract infections;
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa, another bacteria also associated to cases of pneumonia and urinary tract infections;
  • Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, a third bacteria playing a part in pneumonia and urinary tract infections; and
  • several staphylococcus species.

Infectious Bacteria

Cigarettes and BacteriaSapkota doesn’t heed attention to claims that a burning cigarette would kill any bacteria present in the tobacco.

Instead, she theorizes that the cigarette smoke picks up bacteria as it is inhaled, and deposits it into the smoker’s lungs. From here, the bacteria thrives and contributes to the formation of disease.

Reference: Cigarettes might be infectious . . . and, presumably, people wouldn’t need to light up to risk getting sick [http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/55678/title/Cigarettes_might_be_infectious]

Research Discovers Tobacco in Cigarettes Contain Live Bacteria Strains and Human Pathogens

Scientific American just published an article by Brett Isreal with a stiff warning that users of tobacco products are also inhaling live bacteria into their lungs when they smoke tobacco.

The amount of carcinogenic substances and chemicals in cigarettes has been the bulk of the research studies, along with the effects of nicotine addition, until now.

This new research study at University of Maryland points to “hundreds of different strains of bacteria” being introduced to the body with cigarette use. The facts found in this research study begin to explain why smokers contract so many infections and chronic diseases.

The live bacteria, which they are inhaling also contains human pathogens. This is a very serious discovery and researches are trying to deal with the public health implications and additional risks from the second-hand smoke.

Almost every organ in the human body system is harmed by smoking cigarettes. The evidence points to high risks for catching colds, influenza, asthma, bacterial pneumonia, and even interstitial lung disease.

Cancer research facilities are finding the news of this study exciting because it spurs on new research opportunities on the bacterial diversity of tobacco. This is critical research to help scientist understand the dangers for everyone who is exposed, whether they are the smoker or a passerby who experiences the smoke indirectly.

pic-bacteriasThe discovery of bacteria contamination in tobacco leaves prior to harvesting caused concern over what happens when the tobacco is harvested and made into tobacco products and cigarettes. The answer that was found is that the harvested tobacco was also contaminated and was a breading ground for various bacterial strains.

The health implications of smoking that was once thought to just be related to ingesting heavy metals, carcinogenic chemicals, and dealing with the negative effects of nicotine has just added another contributor.

The concern of smoking bugs by inhaling them deep into the lungs is a pretty gruesome picture. I thought parasites were bad.

Stay tuned for new health alerts once this study circulates providing the public is made aware.

Excuse me honey, while I go outside to inhale some bugs in that tasty cigarette!

Credit: Brett Israel and Environmental Health News & Scientific American