Author(s): Ahamed M, Siddiqui MK
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Abstract Lead continues to pose a serious threat to the health of many children as well as adults. Concern about lead exposure as a significant public health problem has increased as evidence has mounted regarding adverse health effects at successively lower levels. This issue is complicated by the fact that there is no demonstrated biological function of lead in human. Lead potentially induces oxidative stress and evidence is accumulating to support the role of oxidative stress in the pathophysiology of lead toxicity. Lead is capable of inducing oxidative damage to brain, heart, kidneys, and reproductive organs. The mechanisms for lead-induced oxidative stress include the effects of lead on membranes, DNA, and antioxidant defense systems of cells. Recent epidemiological and toxicological studies have reported that lead exposure causes several diseases including hypertension, kidney disease, neurodegenerative disease and cognitive impairment. Although all these diseases include components of oxidative stress, the relevance of oxidative stress to lead-related diseases with low lead exposure has been criticized because most of the mechanistic studies have been conducted at moderate to higher dose levels. The association between low level lead exposure and oxidative stress has not been explored systematically. The present review focuses on mechanisms for lead-induced oxidative stress and relevance of oxidative stress to lead-related human disease with low lead exposure.
This article was published in Clin Chim Acta
and referenced in Journal of Bioanalysis & Biomedicine