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Accumulation of cadmium in human placenta interacts with the transport of micronutrients to the fetus
Institute of Environmental Medicine, Division of Metals and health, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Women's and Children's Health. (Internationell kvinno- & mödrahälsovård/Essen)
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2010 (English)In: Toxicology Letters, ISSN 0378-4274, E-ISSN 1879-3169, Vol. 192, no 2, 162-168 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Cadmium (Cd) is a widespread, highly toxic environmental pollutant known to accumulate in human placenta. The aim of the present study was to elucidate to what extent the accumulation of Cd in human placenta interacts with the transport of micronutrients to the fetus. Cd and micronutrients were measured in placenta and umbilical cord blood from 44 non-smoking, rural Bangladeshi women, using ICPMS. Metallothionein (MT) protein expression was determined in placenta using Western blot. Cd in placenta (median 110 microg/kg dry weight, 20 microg/kg wet weight) was positively associated with maternal urinary Cd. It was also positively associated with Cd in umbilical cord blood (median 0.16 microg/kg), but negatively associated with zinc (Zn; median 3mg/kg) in umbilical cord blood. Umbilical cord blood Zn was positively associated with birth anthropometry measures, and the Cd-related impairment of Zn in umbilical cord blood seemed to decrease size at birth. In multivariate analysis, MT protein expression was associated with Cd (positively) in placenta, but not with Zn or copper (Cu) in placenta. In conclusion, the Cd concentrations in placenta were clearly elevated, which seemed to impair Zn transfer to the fetus. Induction of MT explained the placental accumulation of Cd, but not the impairment of Zn transport.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 192, no 2, 162-168 p.
Keyword [en]
Cadmium, Metallothionein, Placenta, Umbilical cord blood, Zinc
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-126113DOI: 10.1016/j.toxlet.2009.10.018ISI: 000274743300013PubMedID: 19854248OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-126113DiVA: diva2:322016
Available from: 2010-06-03 Created: 2010-06-03 Last updated: 2011-08-04Bibliographically approved

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Hoque, A. M. WaheedulEkström, Eva-Charlotte
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