UCSF Center of Excellence on Secondhand Smoke

Investigator: Neal Benowitz, MD
Sponsor: Flight Attendant Medical Research Institute.

Location(s): United States


The national Flight Attendant Medical Research Institute (FAMRI) supports the multi-project FAMRI Bland Lane Center of Excellence on Secondhand Smoke at UCSF.  FAMRI was created through a settlement of a class action lawsuit against tobacco companies on behalf of flight attendants who sustained health problems due to exposure to secondhand smoke in their job. 

The center is directed by Dr. Rita Redberg and co-directed by Dr. Neal Benowitz.  It consists of a flight attendant clinic, a pulmonary research project on flight attendants, a core laboratory and a research project on children's biomarkers. Please see our publications page for recent publications from our investigators. 

The goals of the FAMRI Bland Lane Center of Excellence on Second Hand Smoke at UCSF are to:

  • Provide evaluations and referrals for nonsmoking flight attendants that were exposed to tobacco smoke on airlines to determine effects of SHS exposure and other work related exposures through a dedicated clinical practice.
  • Collect online survey data on flight attendants worldwide on health status and SHS exposure to look for any associations, new and/or confirmatory.
  • Study the impact of SHS with respect to pulmonary function in nonsmoking flight attendants who were exposed to tobacco smoke on airlines and attend the FAMRI clinic.
  • Assess SHS exposure and related adverse health outcomes in populations of vulnerable children, including newborns, children with asthma, and teens, with an emphasis on racial/ethnic minorities.
  • Provide laboratory analysis of existing biomarkers, particularly low level SHS exposure markers.
  • Continue to develop and evaluate novel biomarkers of SHS exposure.