Third-hand smoke

Now that Minnesota has had the debate over second-hand smoke in passing a statewide smoking ban, we can move on to the next topic: third-hand smoke.

New Scientist reports on research that nicotine collecting on carpets and furniture poses a hazard to young children. The researchers reportedly are suggesting people who have smoked in their homes, remove both.

That paves the way for the ELA (“elusive local angle”):

Stephen Hecht at the Masonic Cancer Center at the University of Minnesota thinks that this could be an overreaction. There is as yet no direct evidence that chemicals formed in this way have proved harmful. “I personally feel that exposure by this route would be minimal, but the studies need to be carried out,” Hecht says.