As per a study published in ‘Nature’, it is said that once a smoker quit smoking the body replaces the damaged lung cells with healthy cells from the reservoir of healthy cells in body.
The senior author, Peter Campbell said the study can give new hope to smokers willing to quit smoking. “What is so exciting about our study is that it shows that it is never too late to quit”.
Smokers who use to smoke heavily, he said.”But within a few years of quitting many of cells lining their airways showed no evidence of damage from tobacco”.
During the normal aging process, genetic changes appear in body cells that are harmless and are called “passenger mutations”. But mutations in the wrong gene in wrong cells can “dramatically change the behavior of the cells and instruct them to behave more like a cancer’ Campbell said.
As per the study, it was found current smokers had mutations up to 90% including mutations that can lead to cancer. But persons who quit smoking have damaged cells replaced by healthy cells akin to those who had never smoked. Ex-smokers have up to 40% healthy cells than their counterparts still smoking.
Campbell said the damaged cells had not been able to “magically repair themselves. Rather they are replaced by healthy cells that have escaped the damage from cigarette smoke”. He further said, “Once the person quits smoking, the cells gradually proliferate from safe harbor to replace the damaged cells”.
Gerd P Pfeifer, professor at the Van Andel Institute’s Center for Epigenetics, praised the study and said, “It has shed light on how the protective effect of smoking cessation plays out at the molecular level in human lung tissue,”
Thus give your lung cells a chance, to heal naturally, by quitting smoking.
Wishing all a healthy life.
(For awareness purpose only).