Determination and Assessment of Heavy Metals in Tobacco Sold and Smoked in Palestinian Market

Discussion Committee: 
Dr. Ahmad Abu-Obaid / Supervisor
Dr. Shehdeh Jodeh / Co – Supervisor
Dr. Ziad Shakhsher / External examiner
Dr. Nidal A. Zatar / Internal examiner
Dr. Ahmad Abu-Obaid / Supervisor
Dr. Shehdeh Jodeh / Co – Supervisor
Ola Ahmad Mohammad
Since there was no data about heavy metals contents in Palestinian cigarette brands, this study could provide a new data to be useful for health organizations in Palestine. Measured levels of heavy metals in cigarette tobacco brands show further information from a public health places. Cadmium (Cd), lead (Pb), cobalt (Co), nickel (Ni), copper (Cu) and zinc (Zn) contents were determined in 25 brands of tobacco cigarette commonly available in Palestinian market by flam atomic absorption spectrophotometer. The concentration of heavy metals in the cigarettes ranged, Cd: from 0.85 to 2.11 μg/g with mean 1.20±0.15 μg/g, Pb: 2.21 to 5.06 μg/g with mean 3.12±1.33 μg/g, Co: 0.18 to 2.61 μg/g with mean 1.09±0.28 μg/g, Ni: 3.42 to 6.23 μg/g with mean 4.92±0.53 μg/g, Cu: 11.86 to 20.35 μg/g with mean 15.21±0.34 μg/g, and Zn: 30.55 to 114.43 μg/g with mean 51.15±0.14 μg/g. Comparable results of heavy metals are obtained in both imported and Palestinian cigarettes. These results indicate that tobacco plant is a main source of many heavy metals pollutants and the levels of metals contents in cigarettes sold in Palestine are similar to other parts of the world, but the concentration of these metals in Palestinian cigarettes is slightly higher than imported cigarettes. So it can extremely be increased by the effects of inhalation metals especially cadmium in places where smokers are present and it results in health problem more than what was assumed. Thus, these data suggest smokers in Palestine could receive significantly higher exposures to various toxic and carcinogenic metals from cigarettes and have higher intake of heavy metals particularly Cd and Pb. The results indicate that smoking and exposure to cigarette smoke is a serious problem to be taken into account when carrying out epidemiological studies on human exposure to heavy metals.  
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