Document Detail

The concept of critical levels of toxic heavy metals in target tissues.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2202325     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The high reactivity of heavy metals with biological systems is well documented, although some disagreement remains on the precise dose-effect relationships involved. This represents a question of considerable importance, especially in attempts to assess the risks of exposure. The implicit assumption is usually made that a threshold concentration of specific metals exists in the most sensitive target organ, so that an increased frequency of functional lesions will be expected if this threshold is exceeded. The threshold for the metal defines its so-called critical level, and this review was written in order to examine the theoretical and practical difficulties in establishing such a level. Among these may be cited, for instance, the dependence of what constitutes the target tissue on the speciation of the metal, the changes in apparent critical level with rate and route of metal administration, the short half-life of some of the metals as well as their compartmentation in the tissues, and the considerable initiation delay frequently preceding the appearance of lesions. For these and other reasons a useful approximate value for a critical concentration has only been proposed so far for the total Cd concentration in the renal cortex of chronically exposed human adults.
E C Foulkes
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Critical reviews in toxicology     Volume:  20     ISSN:  1040-8444     ISO Abbreviation:  Crit. Rev. Toxicol.     Publication Date:  1990  
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1990-10-04     Completed Date:  1990-10-04     Revised Date:  2005-11-16    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8914275     Medline TA:  Crit Rev Toxicol     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  327-39     Citation Subset:  IM    
University of Sydney, Australia.
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MeSH Terms
Metals / toxicity*
Organ Specificity
Reg. No./Substance:

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