UNC Scientists' Data Featured in American Lung Association Report and CNN Blog

CHAPEL HILL, NC -UNC scientists were leaders in providing data used in the new American Lung Association’s report: Smoking Out a Deadly Threat: Tobacco use in the LGBT Community Disparities in Lung Cancer Series.Icon indicating that a link will open an external site.

The ALA report was featured in a recent blogIcon indicating that a link will open an external site. by CNN’s Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

The Lung Association's compilation of research found possible contributing factors to the LGBT smoking rate including: stress and discrimination related to homophobia, the tobacco industry's targeted marketing to LGBT customers, and lack of access to appropriate tobacco treatment programs among various other factors. The report makes a number of recommendations including inclusion of sexual orientation questions in state and federal health surveys.

Joseph Lee, MPH, CPH, and Cathy Melvin, PhD, were co-authors of a systematic review of studies on the subject, and these data were used to develop the ALA Report for which Lee served on the editorial advisory board. Their article was titled: Tobacco use among sexual minorities, USA, 1987- May 2007: a systematic review.Icon indicating that a link will open an external site. Tob Control 2009;18(4):275-82. Additional co-author was Gabriel Griffin of Duke.

Lee is a social research specialist in the UNC School of Medicine Department of Family Medicine’s Tobacco Prevention and Evaluation Program.

Melvin is research associate professor of maternal and child health in the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health and a research associate at the Sheps Center for Health Services Research. She is director of the dissemination core for UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center and the NC TraCS.