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  • 1 Department of Grain and Industrial-Plant, Faculty of Food Science, Szent István University H-1118 Budapest, Somlói út 14-16. Hungary
  • | 2 Department of Grain and Industrial-Plant, Faculty of Food Science, Szent István University H-1118 Budapest, Somlói út 14-16. Hungary
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Interest is increasing in the content of toxic metals in cigarette smoke for both their harmful health effects and the possible antagonistic influence with the essential microelements. Numerous factors influence the metal concentration found in tobacco, including soil type and pH, genotype, stalk position, application of metal-containing pesticides to leaves. The rate of transfer to the smoke is dependent on the volatility, the temperature and the filter-type. In cigarette smoke element concentrations vary among brands and even within the same brand. No comprehensive information is yet available on the toxic heavy metal content of the major Hungarian cigarette-brands. The purpose of the study was to obtain current information on the metal contents of selected brands of cigarettes being sold in Hungary. The work described in this paper had two objectives: firstly to determine the cadmium, lead, zinc and iron content of raw materials (tobacco-cut, cigarette paper, filter-rod) and secondly to measure the amount of these metals in the combustion products (cigarette smoke, ash, filter-rod). Non-negligible part of the toxic metal content of the tobacco cut gets into the mainstream smoke, but the measured values are not higher than the similar data published in the international literature. Filters are not really efficient to decrease the toxic metal content of the mainstream smoke. The toxic metal concentration in the sidestream smoke is higher than in the mainstream smoke.

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