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Neurotoxic effects of aluminium among foundry workers and Alzheimer's disease.
Neurotoxicology. 2002 Dec; 23(6):761-74.N

Abstract

BACKGROUND

In a cross-sectional case-control study conducted in northern Italy, 64 former aluminium dust-exposed workers were compared with 32 unexposed controls from other companies matched for age, professional training, economic status, educational and clinical features. The findings lead the authors to suggest a possible role of the inhalation of aluminium dust in pre-clinical mild cognitive disorder which might prelude Alzheimer's disease (AD) or AD-like neurological deterioration.

METHODS

The investigation involved a standardised occupational and medical history with particular attention to exposure and symptoms, assessments of neurotoxic metals in serum: aluminium (Al-s), copper (Cu-s) and zinc (Zn-s), and in blood: manganese (Mn-b), lead (Pb-b) and iron (Fe-b). Cognitive functions were assessed by the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), the Clock Drawing Test (CDT) and auditory evoked Event-Related Potential (ERP-P300). To detect early signs of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), the time required to solve the MMSE (MMSE-time) and CDT (CDT-time) was also measured.

RESULTS

Significantly higher internal doses of Al-s and Fe-b were found in the ex-employees compared to the control group. The neuropsychological tests showed a significant difference in the latency of P300, MMSE score, MMSE-time, CDT score and CDT-time between the exposed and the control population. P300 latency was found to correlate positively with Al-s and MMSE-time. Al-s has significant effects on all tests: a negative relationship was observed between internal Al concentrations, MMSE score and CDT score; a positive relationship was found between internal Al concentrations, MMSE-time and CDT-time. All the potential confounders such as age, height, weight, blood pressure, schooling years, alcohol, coffee consumption and smoking habit were taken into account.

CONCLUSIONS

These findings suggest a role of aluminium in early neurotoxic effects that can be detected at a pre-clinical stage by P300, MMSE, MMSE-time, CDT-time and CDT score, considering a 10 micrograms/l cut-off level of serum aluminium, in aluminium foundry workers with concomitant high blood levels of iron. The authors raise the question whether pre-clinical detection of aluminium neurotoxicity and consequent early treatment might help to prevent or retard the onset of AD or AD-like pathologies.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Dipartimento di Medicina del Lavoro dell'Università di Torino, Servizio di Medicina del Lavoro, ASL 8, 10044 Carignano, TO, Torino, Italy. mdl8to@cometacom.itNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

12520766

Citation

Polizzi, Salvatore, et al. "Neurotoxic Effects of Aluminium Among Foundry Workers and Alzheimer's Disease." Neurotoxicology, vol. 23, no. 6, 2002, pp. 761-74.
Polizzi S, Pira E, Ferrara M, et al. Neurotoxic effects of aluminium among foundry workers and Alzheimer's disease. Neurotoxicology. 2002;23(6):761-74.
Polizzi, S., Pira, E., Ferrara, M., Bugiani, M., Papaleo, A., Albera, R., & Palmi, S. (2002). Neurotoxic effects of aluminium among foundry workers and Alzheimer's disease. Neurotoxicology, 23(6), 761-74.
Polizzi S, et al. Neurotoxic Effects of Aluminium Among Foundry Workers and Alzheimer's Disease. Neurotoxicology. 2002;23(6):761-74. PubMed PMID: 12520766.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Neurotoxic effects of aluminium among foundry workers and Alzheimer's disease. AU - Polizzi,Salvatore, AU - Pira,Enrico, AU - Ferrara,Mauro, AU - Bugiani,Massimiliano, AU - Papaleo,Andrea, AU - Albera,Roberto, AU - Palmi,Silvana, PY - 2003/1/11/pubmed PY - 2003/4/5/medline PY - 2003/1/11/entrez SP - 761 EP - 74 JF - Neurotoxicology JO - Neurotoxicology VL - 23 IS - 6 N2 - BACKGROUND: In a cross-sectional case-control study conducted in northern Italy, 64 former aluminium dust-exposed workers were compared with 32 unexposed controls from other companies matched for age, professional training, economic status, educational and clinical features. The findings lead the authors to suggest a possible role of the inhalation of aluminium dust in pre-clinical mild cognitive disorder which might prelude Alzheimer's disease (AD) or AD-like neurological deterioration. METHODS: The investigation involved a standardised occupational and medical history with particular attention to exposure and symptoms, assessments of neurotoxic metals in serum: aluminium (Al-s), copper (Cu-s) and zinc (Zn-s), and in blood: manganese (Mn-b), lead (Pb-b) and iron (Fe-b). Cognitive functions were assessed by the Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), the Clock Drawing Test (CDT) and auditory evoked Event-Related Potential (ERP-P300). To detect early signs of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), the time required to solve the MMSE (MMSE-time) and CDT (CDT-time) was also measured. RESULTS: Significantly higher internal doses of Al-s and Fe-b were found in the ex-employees compared to the control group. The neuropsychological tests showed a significant difference in the latency of P300, MMSE score, MMSE-time, CDT score and CDT-time between the exposed and the control population. P300 latency was found to correlate positively with Al-s and MMSE-time. Al-s has significant effects on all tests: a negative relationship was observed between internal Al concentrations, MMSE score and CDT score; a positive relationship was found between internal Al concentrations, MMSE-time and CDT-time. All the potential confounders such as age, height, weight, blood pressure, schooling years, alcohol, coffee consumption and smoking habit were taken into account. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest a role of aluminium in early neurotoxic effects that can be detected at a pre-clinical stage by P300, MMSE, MMSE-time, CDT-time and CDT score, considering a 10 micrograms/l cut-off level of serum aluminium, in aluminium foundry workers with concomitant high blood levels of iron. The authors raise the question whether pre-clinical detection of aluminium neurotoxicity and consequent early treatment might help to prevent or retard the onset of AD or AD-like pathologies. SN - 0161-813X UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/12520766/Neurotoxic_effects_of_aluminium_among_foundry_workers_and_Alzheimer's_disease_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0161-813X(02)00097-9 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -