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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2013, Article ID 898034, 12 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/898034
Review Article

Cadmium and Its Neurotoxic Effects

1Department of Pathology, The Second Clinical Medical School of Inner Mongolia University for the Nationalities (Inner Mongolia Forestry General Hospital), Yakeshi 022150, Inner Mongolia, China
2Department of Neurosurgery, The Second Clinical Medical School of Inner Mongolia University for the Nationalities (Inner Mongolia Forestry General Hospital), Yakeshi 022150, Inner Mongolia, China

Received 24 April 2013; Revised 28 June 2013; Accepted 30 June 2013

Academic Editor: Renata Santos

Copyright © 2013 Bo Wang and Yanli Du. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Cadmium (Cd) is a heavy metal that has received considerable concern environmentally and occupationally. Cd has a long biological half-life mainly due to its low rate of excretion from the body. Thus, prolonged exposure to Cd will cause toxic effect due to its accumulation over time in a variety of tissues, including kidneys, liver, central nervous system (CNS), and peripheral neuronal systems. Cd can be uptaken from the nasal mucosa or olfactory pathways into the peripheral and central neurons; for the latter, Cd can increase the blood brain barrier (BBB) permeability. However, mechanisms underlying Cd neurotoxicity remain not completely understood. Effect of Cd neurotransmitter, oxidative damage, interaction with other metals such as cobalt and zinc, estrogen-like, effect and epigenetic modification may all be the underlying mechanisms. Here, we review the in vitro and in vivo evidence of neurotoxic effects of Cd. The available finding indicates the neurotoxic effects of Cd that was associated with both biochemical changes of the cell and functional changes of central nervous system, suggesting that neurotoxic effects may play a role in the systemic toxic effects of the exposure to Cd, particularly the long-term exposure.