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Medicine Biotech

Rare "Healthy" Smokers Lungs Explained 175

Bruce66423 writes: New research suggests that a portion of the population suffers few problems from smoking because their genes enable the smoke's effects to be overcome. The Medical Research Council reports: "The new findings, which used the first analyses of genetic data from participants in UK Biobank, may one day help scientists develop better treatments for diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a collection of life-threatening lung disorders affecting almost one million people in the UK. The findings could also help improve interventions aimed at helping smokers to give up."
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Rare "Healthy" Smokers Lungs Explained

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  • I don't smoke a lot but i smoke cigars daily - usually a few a day, sometimes a bit more but less in the past few years as I no longer drink. I used to smoke cigarettes quite often but not really all that regularly. When I did then I'd go through a pack a night while drinking and not smoke the rest of the time. Today, I smoke cigars.

    I'm told that I have the constitution of a horse and that I'll outlive my doctor. Damn it.

    • Cigarette quitter for 7+ months. I don't miss it as much with each passing month, although it still comes up occasionally when I have an adult beverage.

      On the plus side, there seems to be a noticeable stamina improvement when climbing stairs and such, and no more morning hacking.

      But. If I was reliably informed of my eminent demise, I would have some cigarettes... and probably donuts with ice cream.

    • by VAXcat ( 674775 )
      My college roommate's father was a cigar smoker. He got mouth cancer. It was painful. it was also hard for him to do a lot of things after they had to amputate his lower jaw. Finally, it killed him. I don't have a lot of interest in anything that can cause that.
  • by mwfischer ( 1919758 ) on Monday September 28, 2015 @08:25AM (#50612047) Journal

    "By comparing smokers and non-smokers as well as those with the disease and without they discovered sections of our DNA that reduce the risk of COPD.
    So smokers with "good genes" had a lower risk of COPD than those with "bad genes"."

    Top notch reporting, everyone. Solid work.

  • I wonder if the same genetic mutation applies to people who are, or were, exposed to asbestos. And coal miners? I wonder if there other genes that affect immunity to other common conditions? For example, what gene makes politicians immune to compassion and common sense?
    • by TheCarp ( 96830 )

      Oh this is certainly the case in many places. Cancer is a perfect example. It often requires several genetic mutations for a normal cell to become cancerous, partially because there are many safegaurds against it.

      Each individual starts at a random point closer or further away from any particular cancerous state, and in fact, from all of them individually, and this is true not just for cancer but for all manner of subtle variation.

      Life is a big game of bet hedging. You toss 100 people naked in the cold, and

  • Smoke this and make sure you get the smoke deep down into your lungs. It's tobacco, it' one of the healthiest things for your body!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It's not rare at all. Every smoker's grandpa had those lungs.

  • by Mark4ST ( 249650 ) on Monday September 28, 2015 @10:06AM (#50612633) Homepage
    I was once a smoker, and would never go back regardless of my superlungs because:
    • --It breaks up your attention span into one hour chunks
    • --It wastes heaps of money
    • --It supports the douchebags who make it and sell it
    • --It stinks up everything in your life
    • --It signals others that you're not in control of your own person
    • I quit smoking 20 years ago, and now I miss work due to illness once every few years. I sat in on a medical conference back when I smoked, and it seemed like every presenter ended with "...and we never see this disease/condition in anyone under 50...except chronic smokers." I quit soon after that.
    • Excellent post! Mod +1
    • by Falos ( 2905315 )
      I'm especially bitter about #3. Partly because I hate being a puppet (see 5) but also because Fuck Those Guys.

      And gals. Equal opportunity middlefinger here.

      They're content to put whatever they want in it, sell it by any means, and exploit their very clientele as much as the law allows. "Brand loyalty" is a one-way street, they give zero fucks about you. Less, even, except dead customers aren't paying customers. So, again, Fuck Those Guys.

      The remaining reasons stand as turnoffs for tobacco outside t
  • It clearly shows the Government over reach and onerous regulation is crippling the industry. There are genes capable of fighting the ill effects of tobacco. Just give enough cigarettes to enough generations the genes incapable of handling tobacco would have exited the gene pool quietly, (quiet except for some coughing and wheezing) and the future generations would have become strong, capable of handling copious quantities of cigarette smoke and other pollutants.

    This is what Government does for you, makes o

  • "may one day help scientists develop better treatments for diseases"

    Enough already! Any post with this statement in it should be placed in the same bit bucket as "supermoon".

"Never face facts; if you do, you'll never get up in the morning." -- Marlo Thomas