A study has found that men who smoke tobacco are over three times more likely than non-smokers to experience Y chromosome loss. This loss of Y chromosomes has been previously linked to increase risks of cancer. Additionally, this research may explain why smoking is deadlier for men than women.
A research team at the Department of Immunology, Genetics and Pathology at Uppsala University in Sweden led by Lars Forsberg analyzed 6,000 male volunteers. They found that males who are heavy smokers likely were experiencing Y chromosome loss.
“The team found that this genetic damage was related to how much a person smokes – if you’re a moderate smoker, you’ll lose less Y chromosomes than a heavy smoker – and if you quit, you’re likely to regain the same levels as non-smokers in your cells.”
Their study was published in the Science journal.
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