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Tumori. 1994 Jun 30;80(3):229-32.

Daytime circulating melatonin levels in smokers.

Author information

1
Cattedra di Medicina Interna I, University of Florence, Italy.

Abstract

AIMS AND BACKGROUND:

Melatonin secretion is required to be a potential inhibitor of the development and growth of tumors, and cigarette smoking is a well established risk factor for cancer at various sites.

METHODS:

Circulating melatonin levels of 20 smokers and 20 non smokers (controls), sampled at the same hour from awaking in order to obtain a comparable circadian synchronization, were compared.

RESULTS:

Our data showed higher melatonin circulating levels in smokers (17.44 +/- 1.8 pg/ml) than in nonsmokers (9.77 +/- 1.4 pg/ml).

CONCLUSIONS:

The causes, mechanism and meaning of this phenomenon are still unknown. The most attractive hypothesis considers higher melatonin levels in smokers as an attempt to counterbalance cellular growth stimulus, a natural "brake" mechanism to restrain the proliferation of normally differentiated tissues: smoke is a prominent risk factor for several different tumors.

PMID:
8053082
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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