Stanton Glantz

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Stanton Arnold Glantz, Ph.D. (born 1946) is an American Professor of Medicine in the Division of Cardiology, the American Legacy Foundation Distinguished Professor of Tobacco Control, and director of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine.[1] Glantz's research focuses on the health effects of tobacco smoking. Often called the "Ralph Nader of the anti-tobacco movement,"[2][3] Glantz is an activist for nonsmokers' rights and an advocate of public health policies to reduce smoking. He is the author of four books, including The Cigarette Papers[4] and Primer of Biostatistics.[5] Glantz is also a member of the UC San Francisco Cardiovascular Research Institute and Institute for Health Policy Studies[6] and co-leader of the UCSF Comprehensive Cancer Center Tobacco Program. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 2005.

Early life and education

As a youth, Gantz achieved the top rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America, and earned a Bronze Palm for further achievements.[7]

Glantz obtained a BSc in aerospace engineering] from the University of Cincinnati in 1969, an MSc in applied mechanics from Stanford University in 1970 and a PhD in applied mechanics and engineering-economic systems (EES), again from Stanford, in 1973 (EES, a Stanford department created in the late 1960s, involving computers and engineering, applies "methods of systems and economic analysis to engineering problems involving policy and decision making, both in government and industry"[8]). Concurrently with his studies he worked at NASA's Manned Spacecraft Center, first as a student trainee then as an aerospace engineer. In 1973, Glantz carried out postdoctoral research on the mathematical modeling of heart tissue at Stanford University and then at the University of California, San Francisco, where he has worked since 1977.[7][9]

He served for 10 years as an Associate Editor of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology and is a member of the California State Scientific Review Panel on Toxic Air Contaminants of the California Air Resources Board. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine in 2005.

He is the father of journalist Aaron Glantz and daughter Frieda Glantz.


Glantz conducts research on a wide range of issues including the effects of secondhand smoke on the heart by studying reductions in heart attacks observed when smoke-free policies are enacted, and how the tobacco industry fights tobacco control programs. His research on the effects of secondhand smoke on blood and blood vessels concludes that, in terms of heart disease, the effects of secondhand smoke are nearly as large as those of smoking. One such study demonstrated a large and rapid reduction in the number of people admitted to the hospital with heart attacks in Helena, Montana,[10] after that community made all workplaces and public places smokefree.

Glantz is author or coauthor of numerous publications related to secondhand smoke and tobacco control, as well as many papers on cardiovascular function and biostatistics. He has written several books, including the widely used Primer of Biostatistics (which has been translated into Japanese, French, Russian, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish), and Primer of Applied Regression and Analysis of Variance. In total, he is the author of 4 books and over 200 scientific papers, including the first major review (published in Circulation) which identified secondhand smoke as a cause of heart disease and the landmark 1995 Journal of the American Medical Association summary of the Brown & Williamson documents, which showed that the tobacco industry knew nicotine was addictive and that smoking caused cancer 30 years ago.[11]

This publication was followed up with his book, The Cigarette Papers,[4] which has played a key role in the ongoing litigation surrounding the tobacco industry. His book Tobacco Wars: Inside the California Battles[12] chronicles the last quarter century of activism against the tobacco industry in California.

Working with the UCSF Library, Glantz helped in making nearly 50 million pages of previously secret tobacco industry documents available via the internet on the Legacy Tobacco Documents Library and British American Tobacco Documents Archive.[13]

In February 2013, a paper co-authored by Glantz was published in the journal Tobacco Control. Entitled "‘To quarterback behind the scenes, third-party efforts’: the tobacco industry and the Tea Party", the paper detailed how the Tea Party political movement was funded and organized by organizations which were created by tobacco companies.[14]

In March 2014 Glantz released a study claiming that "e-cigarette use is aggravating rather than ameliorating the tobacco epidemic among youths."[15] Thomas J. Glynn, a researcher at the American Cancer Society, responded that "The data in this study do not allow many of the broad conclusions that it draws"[16]


Glantz has been a leading researcher and activist in the nonsmokers' rights movement since 1978, when he helped lead an unsuccessful state initiative campaign to enact a nonsmokers' rights law by popular vote. In 1983, he helped successfully defend the San Francisco Workplace Smoking Ordinance against a tobacco industry-supported attempt to repeal it by referendum.[17] The San Francisco victory represented the first electoral defeat of such a tobacco industry sponsored referendum, and is now viewed as a major turning point in the battle for nonsmokers' rights.[9] He is one of the founders of Americans for Nonsmokers' Rights.

In 1982 he was part of a group of health activists who resurrected the last remaining copy of the film Death in the West, previously suppressed by Philip Morris,[18][19] and developed an accompanying mini-course for fifth to tenth graders that has been used by over one million students.[20][2][9] He helped write and produce the films Secondhand Smoke, which concerns the health effects of involuntary smoking, and 120,000 Lives, which presents evidence that smoking in the movies recruits adolescent smokers and proposes solutions for reducing this effect.[9] He also wrote Tobacco: Biology and Politics[21] for high school students and The Uninvited Guest, a story about secondhand smoke, for second graders.

In May, 1994, Glantz received at his UCSF office two boxes containing 4,000 documents leaked from Brown & Williamson, the third largest US cigarette manufacturer at the time. The material provided the first definitive proof that the tobacco industry had known for 30 years that nicotine was addictive and caused cancer, and had hidden that knowledge from the public. The documents became a landmark in tobacco litigation, medical scholarship, government policy, and corporate control of information. [22][23] With four co-authors, Glantz analyzed the documents and, with extensive excerpts, published the findings as The Cigarette Papers.

Glantz appears in several investigative documentaries: Cigarette Wars (2011), a CNBC examination of how the tobacco industry in America "continues to thrive";[24] Mobilize (2014), exploring the "potential long-term health effects from cell phone radiation";[25] and Merchants of Doubt (2014), based on the non-fiction book, Merchants of Doubt, in which the leaked Brown & Williamson tobacco documents play a key role in illustrating tactics created by tobacco companies and copied by others.[26]

Glantz was also an opponent[27] of the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement (MSA), the "global settlement" of tobacco litigation proposed in 1996, in which the tobacco industry was to be granted de facto immunity from further litigation in exchange for payments to the states and acceptance of weak regulation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.[28] The tobacco industry turned against and defeated this compromise, and defeated legislation introduced in Congress by Senator John McCain (R-AZ), after some public health advocates succeeded in getting the immunity provisions removed. Many of the provisions of the "global settlement"—but not the immunity or FDA provisions—were implemented by the (MSA) between the attorneys general of 46 states and the large tobacco companies. Glantz' analysis of the two agreements concluded that the MSA included most of the desirable provisions of the global settlement without the immunity provisions. In particular, the immunity provisions in the global settlement would have prevented the massive (and successful) federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) lawsuit that the US Department of Justice won against the tobacco industry in 2007. He is now running two websites, SmokeFreeMovies, which is working to end depictions of tobacco use in movies, and TobaccoScam, which opposes tobacco industry involvement in the hospitality industry.


Known for being blunt and abrasive, Glantz embraces his public image and controversial positions on smoking, on occasion wearing a "Here Comes Trouble" T-shirt.[2][29]

Awards and honors

In 2005, he was elected to the prestigious Institute of Medicine.


  1. ^ "Faculty Profiles". UCSF. Retrieved 18 March 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c Robinson, Mark. "Tilting at Tobacco". Stanford University. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  3. ^ Casey, Laura (23 Jan 2008). "Smokers in Hollywood: By all means, unmask pretty people with an ugly habit". Seattle Times. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  4. ^ a b S. Glantz, et al., "The Cigarette Papers", University of California Press, 1996
  5. ^ S. Glantz, Primer of Biostatistics (6 ed), McGraw-Hill, 2005
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ a b "Stanton A. Glantz, PhD". University of California. Retrieved 18 December 2014. 
  8. ^ "Our History". Stanford Engineering (Stanford University). Retrieved 18 December 2014. 
  9. ^ a b c d "Stanton A. Glantz, PhD". University of California. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  10. ^ "The Helena Study (Abstract)". Retrieved 2007-05-01. 
  11. ^ Glantz SA, Barnes DE, Bero L, Hanauer P, Slade J. Looking through a keyhole at the tobacco industry. The Brown and Williamson documents. JAMA. 1995 Jul 19;274(3):219-24. PMID 7609230
  12. ^ S. Glantz and E. Balbach. "Tobacco War: Inside the California Battles", University of California Press, 2000
  13. ^ PBS Frontline, Interview with Stanton Glantz for Smoke in the Eye, 1999.
  14. ^ [2]
  15. ^ JAMA Pediatrics, 6 March 2014, Electronic Cigarettes and Conventional Cigarette Use Among US Adolescents, retrieved 6 Mar 2014
  16. ^ Sabrina Tavernise, "Young Using E-Cigarettes Smoke Too, Study Finds" New York Times March 6, 2014
  17. ^ "California's Tobacco Propositions". University of California, San Francisco. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  18. ^ Hochschild, Adam (January 1979). "Shoot-Out in Marlboro Country (cont'd)". Mother Jones (magazine). Retrieved June 2, 2013. 
  19. ^ "'Death in the West' to be resurrected". The Herald (Glasgow). May 11, 1982. p. 6. Retrieved June 2, 2014. 
  20. ^ "ree Curriculum Guide and Broadcast of 'death in the West' 000129 and 000131". Tobacco Documents Online. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  21. ^ S. Glantz, Tobacco: Biology and Politics, WRS HealthEdCo
  22. ^ Karen Butter, Robin Chandler, and John Kunze (November 1996). "The Cigarette Papers: Issues in Publishing Materials in Multiple Formats". D-Lib Magazine. 
  23. ^ Wiener, Jon (1 January 1996). "The Cigarette Papers". PBS. Retrieved 17 December 2014.  This is an authorized reprint of an article that appeared in The Nation in 1994.
  24. ^ "Cigarette Wars". CNBC. Retrieved 8 March 2015. 
  25. ^ "Mobilize". Kunze Productions. Retrieved 8 March 2015. 
  26. ^ "Merchants of Doubt". Sony Pictures Classics. Retrieved 8 March 2015. 
  27. ^ PBS Frontline, Interview with Stanton Glantz for Inside the Tobacco Deal, 1997
  28. ^ Brion J. Fox J.D., James M. Lightwood Ph.D., and Stanton A. Glantz Ph.D., "A Public Health Analysis of the Proposed Resolution of [the 1997 United States] Tobacco Litigation" (February 1, 1998). Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education. Tobacco Control Policy Making: United States. Paper US1998.
  29. ^ Bach, John. "Anti-smoking crusader: Stanton Glantz, Eng '69". UC Magazine (University of Cincinnati). Retrieved 18 December 2014. 

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