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UB Professor Leads Study that Reveals Tobacco Industry is Booming


UB researcher Gary A. Giovino recently led the largest international study on tobacco use. According to the study, if current trends continue, tobacco use will lead to about 1 billion people worldwide dying prematurely in the next century.

A giant leap from the 100 million lives lost prematurely due to tobacco use in the past century.

The study, published in the premier British medical journal The Lancet, revealed that the use of tobacco in developing countries is booming. The findings are from the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS), created by major national and international health agencies to improve the ability of countries to design, implement and evaluate anti-tobacco efforts.

Researchers surveyed 3 billion individuals in 14 low- and middle-income GATS countries (Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Egypt, India, Mexico, the Philippines, Poland, Russia, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Uruguay and Vietnam), and made comparisons with the United States and the United Kingdom.

A few of the results were:

  • 49 percent of men and 11 percent of women in the GATS countries used tobacco (smoked, smokeless or both).
  • China had the highest number of tobacco users at 301 million people (including 52.9 percent of men) followed by India, with 274 million people (47.9 percent of men).

The research has garnered attention from around the world. The New York Times, Reuters and TIME were among the hundreds of news outlets worldwide reporting on the study. Stories appeared on television stations from New York to Los Angeles, and in news outlets in India, Canada, the Philippines, the Middle East, Asia, Europe and Africa.

For more results of this study, read the full article at

Read more about the study’s worldwide media coverage at

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