Study: Childhood Stress Ups Smoking Odds
October 20, 2011 by UPI - United Press International, Inc.
NEW HAVEN, Conn., Oct. 19 (UPI) — Early childhood adversity increases the likelihood of developing nicotine addiction in later life, U.S. researchers say.
A study published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology suggests the early life stress could affect men and women differently and that there may be a genetic component.
The findings by Joel Gelernter of the Yale University School of Medicine and his colleagues came out of a survey of 2,206 American and European participants about smoking behavior and childhood trauma, such as physical abuse or witnessing a violent crime.
Self-reported childhood trauma increased the risk for chronic smoking, the researchers said, and women were twice as likely to be affected by it as men.
However, they said, men carrying a particular genetic alteration proved to be highly sensitive to the effects of childhood adversity on smoking.
The findings suggest genes can influence responses to environmental risk factors in a sex-dependent manner, the researchers said.