A comparison of oxidative stress in smokers and non-smokers: an in vivo human quantitative study of n-3 lipid peroxidation

Puri, Basant K.; Treasaden, Ian H.; Cocchi, Massimo; Tsaluchidu, Sofia; Tonello, Lucio; Ross, Brian M.
January 2008
BMC Psychiatry;2008 Supplement 1, Vol. 8, Special section p1
Academic Journal
Background: Cigarette smoking is believed to cause oxidative stress by several mechanisms, including direct damage by radical species and the inflammatory response induced by smoking, and would therefore be expected to cause increased lipid peroxidation. The aim was to carry out the first study of the relationship of smoking in humans to the level of n-3 lipid peroxidation indexed by the level of ethane in exhaled breath. Methods: Samples of alveolar air were obtained from 11 smokers and 18 non-smokers. The air samples were analyzed for ethane using mass spectrometry. Results: The two groups of subjects were matched with respect to age and gender. The mean cumulative smoking status of the smokers was 11.8 (standard error 2.5) pack-years. The mean level of ethane in the alveolar breath of the group of smokers (2.53 (0.55) ppb) was not significantly different from that of the group of non-smokers (2.59 (0.29) ppb; p = 0.92). With all 29 subjects included, the Spearman rank correlation coefficient between ethane levels and cumulative smoking status was -0.11 (p = 0.58), while an analysis including only the smokers yielded a corresponding correlation coefficient of 0.11 (p = 0.75). Conclusion: Our results show no evidence that cigarette smoking is related to increased n-3 lipid peroxidation as measured by expired ethane.


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