Background: Smoking has many adverse health effects in infants and adults. The purpose of the study was to study the effect of passive cigarette smoking on oxidative and antioxidative status of plasma in passive smoker infants and their mothers and to compare with those of non-smokers.
Methods: Subjects were randomly chosen from infants aged 8-26 weeks and their mothers aged 20-34 years. Passive smoker infants (n = 29) and their mothers (n = 29) were defined as having other family members who smoked six or more cigarettes per day continually for at least 8 weeks. Non-smokers were defined as infants (n = 30) and their mothers (n = 24) who had never been exposed to passive smoking. The antioxidative status of plasma were perused by measuring the total antioxidant capacity. Oxidative status was evaluated by predicating total peroxide level, oxidative stress index, protein oxidation and lipid peroxidation.
Results: Plasma concentrations of total antioxidant capacity were significantly lower in passive smoker infants and their mothers than non-passive smoker infants and their mothers. However, lipid peroxidation and oxidative stress index were remarkably higher in passive smoker infants and their mothers than those of non-passive smoker infants and their mothers. There were significant correlations between the oxidative and antioxidative parameters of the passive smoker infants and their mothers.
Conclusions: Oxidants are increased and antioxidants are decreased in passive smoker infants and their mothers than those of non-smokers. Passive smoker infants and their mothers are exposed to potent oxidative stress.