Approximately 47 million people smoke in the US today, all of whom continue to smoke even though the health risks are well known. The skin is the body's first line of defense and this project investigated which of three cigarette smoke chemicals; formaldehyde, methanol, or ammonia, had the greatest effect on the growth of skin cells. Nicotine is probably the best known deadly chemical found in cigarette smoke, but is by far not the only one. Formaldehyde, methanol, and ammonia are all found in cigarette smoke and previous studies have found all have negative side effects on many parts of the body including the lungs, heart, and even the skin.
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