A large body of evidence links tobacco smoke exposure with poorer lung function. Recent research from an international team including University at Albany School of Public Health’s Drs. Shao Lin and Michael S. Bloom shows that owning pets early in life may modify the relationship between environmental tobacco smoke and lung function.
The researchers, led by Dr. Guanghui Dong from Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China, collected lung function data from 7,326 children between the ages of 7 and 14 in several northeastern cities in China. Information on pet ownership time periods and tobacco smoke exposure was gathered via questionnaire.
Analysis of the data showed that pet exposure in utero and during the first two years of life, but not current ownership, increased the risk of impairment of lung function induced by environmental tobacco smoke. Among children exposed to current environmental tobacco smoke, those exposed to pets in utero had greater reductions in lung function.
Full results of the study can be found in Environmental Research.Tags: Friday Letter Submission, Publish on March 27