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Paternal Childhood Smoke Exposure Tied to Asthma Risk in Offspring

Last Updated: September 21, 2022.

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 21, 2022 (HealthDay News) -- Fathers' passive smoke exposure through childhood may be associated with nonallergic asthma risk in offspring, according to a research letter published online Sept. 14 in the European Respiratory Journal.

Jiacheng Liu, from the University of Melbourne in Australia, and colleagues examined the association between fathers' passive smoke exposure throughout childhood to puberty and asthma risk in offspring using data from 1,689 father-offspring pairs. Childhood asthma and hay fever status were reported by parents at age 7 years.

The researchers found that fathers' passive smoke exposure before age 15 years was associated with increased odds of nonallergic asthma in offspring by age 7 years (adjusted multinomial odds ratio [aMOR], 1.59; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.09 to 2.32). The association was stronger in ever-smoked fathers than in fully nonsmoking fathers (aMOR, 1.72 [95 percent CI, 1.02 to 2.92] versus 1.39 [95 percent CI, 0.78 to 2.46]) after further stratification by fathers' lifetime active smoking history. In further interaction analyses, a significant association was suggested between combined fathers' exposure to passive smoke before completing puberty and active smoking with offspring childhood nonallergic asthma (aMOR, 1.68; 95 percent CI, 1.02 to 2.79). The associations with offspring overall asthma or allergic asthma were not statistically significant.

"These findings provide new insights and stronger evidence for the transgenerational effects caused by paternal passive smoke exposure on their offspring health," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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