Monday, April 7, 2008

Gene Linked to Addiction, Cancer!

Gene Linked to Addiction, Cancer April 3rd 2008

Scientists have pinpointed three closely connected genes that
a) makes people more prone to tobacco addiction AND
b) more likely to develop lung cancer (as a result of smoking more cigarettes in a day than those without the genes)

'The genetic variations which encode nicotine receptors in cells could eventually help explain some of the mysteries of chain smoking, nicotine addiction and lung cancer’

This discovery, made by three teams of scientists funded by governments in the US and in Europe could just mean that a predisposition to smoking is hereditary!

‘A smoker who inherits the genetic variations from both parents has an 80% greater chance of lung cancer than a smoker without the variants’.

The team also found that smokers with the genes are more likely to ‘light up’ on average two more cigarettes a day than those who do not have the genes. Not only do they smoke more but they find it harder to quit!

This discovery opens the possibility for better ‘tailor made’ treatments . And by putting this information out there it might better awareness campaigns (which haven’t been doing so well lately!) urging smokers to quit whilst discouraging the younger population from taking up smoking.

If informed of this new information children with parents that smoke may be more inclined to avoid smoking.

For more information the journals Nature and Nature Genetics contain the published results.

Or read the article in full:

Posted by Sarah McNeill

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