Thursday, 25 November 2010

SIDS: The Effect of In Utero Cigarette Smoke Exposure

Volume 23, Number 3, 2010

Hemant Sawnani, M.D., Erik Olsen, B.E., and Narong Simakajornboon, M.D.
Maternal cigarette smoking is the most modifiable risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome. Although the
mechanism underlying the association between maternal smoking and sudden infant death syndrome is unknown,
the effect of
important causative mechanism. In human, several studies have linked maternal smoking and alterations in
breathing pattern, ventilatory, and arousal responses in infants during the early postnatal age. Cigarette contains
many compounds, but nicotine has been identified as the main culprit underlying changes in respiratory control.
Further investigations in animal models have demonstrated that perinatal nicotine exposure results in alteration
in baseline ventilation, ventilatory response to hypoxia, arousals, and autoresuscitation processes in developing
animals. The mechanisms underlying the effect of nicotine exposure on respiratory control may be related to
modulation of neurotransmitters and signal transductions mediating ventilatory control and arousal responses.
Findings from these studies will help to understand how perinatal cigarette smoke exposure interferes with
respiratory control development, and may lead to more effective preventive strategies and therapeutic intervention
for this significant health problem.
in utero cigarette smoke exposure on respiratory control development is speculated as the

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