Lead toxicity: a review

Ab Latif Wani 1 , Anjum Ara 1 , and Jawed Ahmad Usmani 2
  • 1 Section of Genetics, Department of Zoology, Faculty of Life Science, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh, Utter Pradesh, India
  • 2 Department of Forensic Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College and Hospital, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh, Utter Pradesh, India

Abstract

Lead toxicity is an important environmental disease and its effects on the human body are devastating. There is almost no function in the human body which is not affected by lead toxicity. Though in countries like US and Canada the use of lead has been controlled up to a certain extent, it is still used vehemently in the developing countries. This is primarily because lead bears unique physical and chemical properties that make it suitable for a large number of applications for which humans have exploited its benefits from historical times and thus it has become a common environmental pollutant. Lead is highly persistent in the environment and because of its continuous use its levels rise in almost every country, posing serious threats. This article reviews the works listed in the literature with recent updates regarding the toxicity of lead. Focus is also on toxic effects of lead on the renal, reproductive and nervous system. Finally the techniques available for treating lead toxicity are presented with some recent updates.

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