Grant, Charles N.; Lalor, Gerald C; Vutchkov, Mitko K.
Author Affiliation, Ana.
International Centre for Environment and Nuclear Sciences
Trace elements in Jamaican tobacco
West Indian Medical Journal
Date of Publication
The concentrations of 28 elements, in hand-made cigars, 'rope' tobacco and freshly picked tobacco leaves from the parish of Manchester in central Jamaica, were compared with locally packaged and imported cigarettes and cigar. Except for chromium and vanadium, which are lower in the imported products, the elemental concentrations of all the brands sold in Jamaica are rather similar. The means for aluminum, cadmium, cesium, cerium, chromium, iron, thorium, uranium, vanadium and zinc for the Manchester material exceed the maximum values of the other tobaccos. The significant concentrations of heavy metals, and especially cadmium which is about 50 times that of commercial cigarettes, reflect the known high concentrations in the soils in the region. This tobacco is not filtered and the smoke contains 50 % of the cadmium. This and the concentrations of radioactive elements may indicate an additional health risk compared with commercial cigarettes. A study of three samples of marijuana indicates a similar level of risk form heavy metals.....