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Cancer Control Research

7R03CA130728-03
Novotny, Thomas Edward
SUSCEPTIBILITY TO SMOKING INITIATION AMONG RURAL AND URBAN YOUNG CHINESE WOMEN

Abstract

6. Project Summary/Abstract The University of California, Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education (CTCRE) and the Peking Union Medical College (PUMC) propose a collaborative research project to understand differences in behavioral risk factors for smoking among rural versus urban Chinese women aged 14-24 years old. This study involves surveys of high school- and college-attending young women in 10 Chinese Provinces. We will use school networks already established by PUMC researchers and the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in these Provinces to access young women and to interview them about their knowledge, attitudes, and intentions to smoke cigarettes. This study aims to understand not only the risks for uptake of smoking by a well-recognized vulnerable population, but also the potential for prevention programs that may head off a devastating new epidemic of smoking among young Chinese women. Comparing rural and urban women will help understand the impacts of rapid urbanization now occurring in China and the influence of globalization on smoking initiation among women. This study addresses NIH priorities for Behavioral Research in Cancer Prevention and Control particularly on the etiology and prevention of smoking in high-risk populations. Such research may lead to improved policies reflecting on the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control commitments in which China is a signatory nation. 7. Project Narrative This project is relevant to global public health in that it identifies a potential epidemic problem in a heretofore low risk group. Given globalization and evidence from recent epidemiologic surveys showing increased smoking prevalence among urban young women, this research is extraordinarily important to understand how messages that have been identified in tobacco industry document research have penetrated new markets of young women in China. Understanding these determinants more thoroughly will permit Peking Union Medical College and its public health partners (such as Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, and the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention) to develop effective policies on advertising, promotion, public information, and regulation that may prevent a rapid increase in smoking among young Chinese women. With newly available funding from Michael Bloomberg (up to $10 million in support for interventions in China alone), this research will help China grapple with a tough problem but with much improved resources. Data are necessary for these interventions to be successful, and the research here will be used by numerous collaborating agencies.


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