University at Buffalo Finds Indoor Air Pollution Key Contributor to Lung Cancer

Lina Mu, Assistant Professor, Department of Social and Preventive Medicine

Published February 8, 2013

Indoor air pollution that generates fine particulate matter is a key contributor to the high rates of lung cancer among Chinese women, despite the fact that few of them smoke, according to a new study by the University at Buffalo School of Public Health and Health Professions. The study — the first to measure particulate matter levels inside the home and link it with the incidence of lung cancer in Chinese women — was recently published online in the journal Cancer Causes & Control.

“Our results show that besides smoking, indoor air pollution contributes significantly to women’s lung cancer risk in China,” says Dr. Lina Mu, assistant professor of social and preventive medicine and lead author on the paper. The study was conducted in Taiyuan City, one of the top-10 air-polluted cities in the world, according to Asian Development Bank’s 2012 annual report. A large industrial city in northern China, Taiyuan is home to heavy industry, including steel, coal mining and processing, and electronics plants.