Factors that affect the risk of lung adenocarcinoma among females were investigated in Shenyang, China, using a population-based case-control study design. A total of 72 new cases, ages 35-69, diagnosed with incident, primary pulmonary adenocarnoma, were collected between April 1991 and December 1995, and were 1:1 age-matched with healthy females randomly selected from the general population. A questionnaire covering demographics, diet/nutritional preferences and cooking habits, living conditions, family history of cancer, sources of indoor/outdoor/occupational pollution, exposure to ETS from spousal smoking, workplace exposure, and exposure during childhood, history of menstruation and pregnancy, was given to each subject in a structured in-person interview given by trained field workers. Univariate analysis was performed on the data collected. The results showed that cooking fumes, family history of lung cancer, economic status, and number of live births and intake of vitamin E were risk factors significantly associated with adenocarcinoma of the lung. In particular, exposure to different levels of cooking fumes, an indoor air pollutant, increased the odds ratio of lung adenocarcinoma by 1.33, 7.33 and 1.67, respectively (trend p=0.006). Another important risk factor was family history of lung cancer, which gave an OR of 7.65 (95% CI, 0.90-169.84). Intake of beta-carotene from vegetables and fruit offered protection against lung adenocarcinoma, giving an OR of 0.28 (95% CI, 0.12-0.69). These results were confirmed by multivariable logistic regression analysis.