Mechanisms of smoking-related lung and pancreatic adenocarcinoma development
Adenocarcinoma of the lungs and pancreas are among the most common and most deadly smoking-associated cancers. Cigarette smoke contains various toxic chemicals, including a carcinogenic nitrosamine, nitrosamine 4-(methylnitrosamino)-1-(3-pyridyl)-1-butanone (NNK). One of the most well-known features of NNK is the ability of its metabolites to bind to DNA and induce activating point mutations in the RAS gene. But NNK is also a beta-adrenergic-receptor agonist that stimulates arachidonic acid release, leading to the formation of mitogenic metabolites that stimulate DNA synthesis and cell proliferation. NNK therefore contributes to tobacco-induced carcinogenesis by several mechanisms.
Hildegard M. Schuller. "Mechanisms of smoking-related lung and pancreatic adenocarcinoma development" Nature Reviews Cancer 2.6 (2002): 455-463.