Polonium-210: A Volatile Radioelement in Cigarettes

  title={Polonium-210: A Volatile Radioelement in Cigarettes},
  author={Edward P. Radford and V R Hunt},
  pages={247 - 249}
Polonium-210, which emits alpha particles, is a natural contaminant of tobacco. For an individual smoking two packages of cigarettes a day, the radiation dose to bronchial epithelium from Po210 inhaled in cigarette smoke probably is at least seven times that from background sources, and in localized areas may be up to 1000 rem or more in 25 years. Radiation from this source may, therefore, be significant in the genesis of bronchial cancer in smokers. 
Polonium in Cigarettes—Spectroscopic Analysis
ALPHA-RADIOACTIVITY in cigarettes has recently been measured by two groups. Turner and Radley1 suggested that 210Pb and 210Po are not present in the raw tobacco at levels of activity of the sameExpand
Abstract It is known that 210Po contained in tobacco is volatile at the temperature of a burning cigarette. Hence a radiation hazard from 210Po may arise for a smoker's bronchial epithelium. HenceExpand
Study of Polonium-210 in Persian Cigarette and Tobacco Crops.
Drying in direct contact with fumes of fossil fuel seems like one of the main excessive sources of 210Po in Persian cigarettes. Expand
Systemic absorption of polonium-210 inhaled in cigarette smoke.
The kinetics of the change in the concentration of polonium-210 in the peripheral blood of six cigarette smokers has been studied and indicates that a major fraction of the Isotope inhaled in cigarette smoke is absorbed directly into the blood stream. Expand
Lead-210 and Polonium-210 in Tissues of Cigarette Smokers
Concentrations of lead-210 and polonium-210 in rib bones taken from 13 cigarette smokers were about twice those in six nonsmokers, the polonium-210 being close to radioactive equilibrium with theExpand
Polonium-210 in cigarette tobacco
Cigarette smokers who consume one pack (20 cigarettes) per day are inhaling an average of 151 mBq/day of 210Po and 210Pb each, and the mean values of the annual effective dose for smokers were estimated to be 237 and 309 µSv, respectively. Expand
Polonium-210 Activity in the Lungs of Cigarette Smokers
The lung tissue dissected from heavy smokers was shown to contain 3-4 times the 210Po activity found in the lungs of nonsmokers, and the parenchymal tissue the bifurcation and the bronchial tissue were dissected before measurement. Expand
Polonium-210 budget in cigarettes.
  • A. Khater
  • Chemistry, Medicine
  • Journal of environmental radioactivity
  • 2004
The results of this work indicate that the average (range) activity concentration of (210)Po in cigarette tobacco was 16.6 (9.7-22.5) mBq/cigarette, which might contribute significantly to an increase in the internal radiation dose and in the number of instances of lung cancer observed among smokers. Expand
Polonium 210 in tobacco, cigarette smoke, and selected human organs.
Since Polonium 210 may be one of the causes of lung cancer a study was undertaken to determine its level in filtered and nonfiltered cigarettes, and tests indicated higher levels of polonium210 in the organs of smokers. Expand
Natural radioactive nuclides in cigarettes and dose estimation for smokers
The annual effective dose of radionuclides to smokers was found to be 0.27 mSv year−1, which was lower than an intervention exemption level given in International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP Publ. 82). Expand


Lead-210 and Polonium-210 in Grass
Evidence is presented that suggests that a large part of the alpha activity observed in certain samples of grass may originate as a decay product of atmospheric radon which is deposited onto theExpand
Latent Carcinogenic Action of Beta-Irradiation on Mouse Epidermis
It seemed of interest to inquire whether a ‘latent’ tumour change similar to that produced by the hydrocarbon could be induced in mouse skin by the local application of beta-rays in a single, subcarcinogenic dose. Expand
On cigarette smoking, bronchial carcinoma and ciliary action. I. Smoking habits and measurement of smoke intake.
  • A. Hilding
  • Medicine
  • The New England journal of medicine
  • 1956
Hoping to add some useful points of information on the dosage of smoke intake and the disposition of smoke in the respiratory tract, the author undertook the studies reported in this and subsequent articles. Expand
The dose to the trachea and bronchi from the decay products of radon and thoron.
When air containing radon or thoron is breathed some of the decay products* are deposited on the surface of the respiratory system, and the radiation from this active deposit then gives a dose to theExpand
Alpha Activity of Certain Botanical Materials
Results are tabulated from measurements of alpha radioactivity in a number of plants and soil samples collected in Great Britain and Central Africa. Some of the plants are used directly as humanExpand
Smoking in Relation to Mortality and Morbidity.
More desirable coatings than heretofore possible, that are less subject to yellow discoloration occurring in conventional coatings and capable of being cast at greater thickness without carcking, are obtained therewith. Expand
Laboratory Contributions to the Tobacco-cancer Problem*
The present report represents an evaluation of the contributions that laboratory research is making in this field and concludes that the importance of laboratory work is not to prove that smoking is a cause of cancer in man. Expand
Analysis of teeth and bones for alpha-emitting elements.
A method for the analysis of a single tooth and small samples of bone for Po/sup 210/, Ra/sup 226/, and Ra/sup 224/ is described. It was found to give results in good agreement with those obtained byExpand
Human lung tissue was obtained by John B
  • Little through the courtesy of J. Hallgrimsson of the Massachusetts General Hospital
  • 1963