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Continuing to Smoke Quickens Progression of Lung Cancer

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Lung-cancer tumors may grow larger and more quickly in patients who continue to smoke after being diagnosed with the disease, according to researchers who conducted animal studies at the University of California at San Diego's School of Medicine.

HealthDay News reported Jan. 19 that researchers who studied lab mice found that cigarette smoke increased lung inflammation and promoted lung cancer growth. Conversely, the study authors suggested that anti-inflammatory drugs could slow or stop progression of the disease.

“We've shown for the first time that tobacco smoke is a tumor promoter — not only a tumor initiator — and that it works through inflammation,” said study author Michael Karin.

The research was published in the Jan. 19, 2010 issue of the journal Cancer Cell.

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