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Dublin: 9°C Tuesday 28 September 2021

Irish scientists have figured out ANOTHER way smoking is bad for you

Researchers from Trinity College Dublin have discovered exactly how smokers are more at risk of TB.

File photo.
File photo.
Image: LawPrieR via Flickr/Creative Commons

RESEARCHERS FROM TRINITY College Dublin have pinpointed exactly how smoking leads to an increased risk of tuberculosis.

After studying patients, both smokers and non-smokers at the bronchoscopy suite at St James’s Hospital, the researchers found weakened white blood cells in the smokers’ lungs.

When subjected to TB, these cells should have fought back against the bacteria, but instead malfunctioned.

“This study provides evidence which explains the link between smoking and TB and should considerably strengthen anti-smoking efforts to control TB,” senior author of the study Professor Joseph Keane said.

The researchers believe that the study, published in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, will allow unlock new options for vaccination.

Although there is only around 400 cases of TB in Ireland per year, the World Health Organisation still considers it a global health emergency.

Worldwide, it kills more than 9 million people per year.

Ireland faces the issue of recurring outbreaks and cases of TB which are resistant to multiple drugs.

Read: France to follow Ireland’s lead with plain cigarette packaging >

Poll: Is the State right to crack down on smoking? >

About the author:

Nicky Ryan

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