Background: This study was conducted to evaluate the impact of filter on the eventual carcinogenic and noncarcinogenic risks caused by the main toxic constituents of popular cigarette brands in Iran.
Methods: At this laboratory study, the concentration of benzene, formaldehyde, arsenic, and cadmium in the
mainstream smoke of 11 popular cigarette brands in Iran, on the without and with-filter modes was
determined based on an established method. The hazard quotient (HQ), incremental lifetime cancer risk
(ILCR), and mixture quantitative risk assessments (QRAs) were performed based on the QRA method
recommended by United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA).
Findings: The mean of HQ due to benzene, formaldehyde, arsenic, and cadmium in without-filter cigarette
smoke was from 3.96 to 3505. The findings indicated that the HQs related to benzene, formaldehyde, arsenic,
and cadmium in cigarette smoke were decreased with filter by 48.3%, 25.3%, 37.6%, and 49.1%, respectively.
The filter of cigarette decreased ILCR of benzene, formaldehyde, arsenic, and cadmium in cigarette smoke by
53.02%, 25.31%, 37.70%, and 61.01%, respectively. The mixture of non-carcinogenic and carcinogenic
estimated risks due to inhalation of studied cigarettes smoke was very high and unacceptable.
Conclusion: The cigarette filter plays an essential role in reducing inhalation exposure to hazardous
compounds in mainstream cigarette smoke; nevertheless, the average of overall mixture HQs and ILCRs
estimated caused by studied compounds was higher than the acceptable value. It is recommended that future
empirical studies investigate the impact of the type of fiber used in cigarette filter on reducing carcinogenic
and non-carcinogenic risks caused by cigarette smoke.