26 August 2009

Nicotine is Responsible for the Loss of Muscle Mass

Nicotine is Responsible for the Loss of Muscle MassSmokers have one more bad piece of news. Smoking not only leads to cardiovascular disease and cancer, but also to excessive loss of muscle mass with age. This loss of muscle and, consequently, strength, leads to a more rapid decrease in physical activity and ability to self-sufficiency. 16 people over 60 were involved in the study held at the University of Nottingham. Patients were grouped into the same group on the living conditions and habits; they all took the same amount of alcohol and approximately the same lifestyle.

Half of the group was represented by smokers, who smoked at least 20 years up to pack of cigarettes a day and half by non-smoking patients. To assess the intensity of metabolism in the muscle tissue they give to all of them an injection of intravenous drug containing labeled amino acids, which is embedded in the structure of the synthesized protein. Samples of muscle tissue were taken before and after infusion. The rate of protein synthesis in muscle was proportional to the total mass of muscles.

During the study, it was found that protein synthesis in smokers' muscles was significantly slower than in the muscles of non-smokers. In addition, the concentration of substances, which are slowed the growth of muscle mass themselves was higher in the muscle of smokers. According to the organizers of the study, the negative impact of smoking on the lungs fairly well studied, but new findings show more and more risks for people who cannot get rid of nicotine addiction.