ORIGINAL RESEARCH
Lead Turnover and Changes in the Body Status of Chosen Micro- and Macroelements in Rats Exposed to Lead and Ethanol
J. Moniuszko-Jakoniuk*, M. Jurczuk, M. Gałażyn-Sidorczuk, M. M. Brzóska
 
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Department of Toxicology, Medical Academy, Mickiewicza 2c str., 15-222 Bialystok, Poland
 
Pol. J. Environ. Stud. 2003;12(3):335–344
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ABSTRACT
The effect of continuous exposure to lead (Pb) and ethanol on Pb turnover and zinc (Zn), copper (Cu), iron (Fe), calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) body status was studied in male Wistar rats. The animals received an aqueous solution of 10% (w/v) ethanol and/or 500 ěg Pb/cm3 as the only drinking fluid for 12 weeks. Exposure to Pb as well as ethanol alone influenced the body status of Zn, Cu, Fe, Ca and Mg. Dis-turbances in their metabolism were reflected in decreased bioavailability, changes in serum and/or tissue concentrations and urinary excretion. The most serious disorders under Pb influence were observed in Fe metabolism, while ethanol alone disturbed mainly Fe, Cu and Zn body status. In the conditions of co-ex-posure to Pb and ethanol some changes were more or less evident and sometimes they had different direc-tion than at separate intoxication. Moreover, simultaneous exposure to Pb and ethanol led to changes in the concentrations of Cu, Fe and Mg, which were not observed in the case of separate administration. The independent action of Pb and/or ethanol as well as the interactive effect of both substances involving the modifying influence of ethanol on Pb turnover could explain the changes in the metabolism of bioelements under combined exposure to Pb and ethanol. Our results seem to indicate that Pb-exposed human subjects abusing ethanol may be more vulnerable to the accumulation of Pb in body organs and metabolic disorders of some bioelements, which may in con-sequence enhance the risk of health injury.
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