Children living near toxic waste sites in lower and middle income countries such as India, Philippines and Indonesia may experience higher blood lead levels, resulting in a loss of IQ points and a higher incidence of mental retardation, according to a study presented today by Kevin Chatham-Stephens, MD, Pediatric Environmental Health Fellow at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, at the Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) annual meeting on May 6 in Washington, DC.
The study titled, "The Pediatric Burden of Disease from Lead Exposure at Toxic Waste Sites in Low and Middle Income Countries in 2010," was a joint research partnership between Mount Sinai and the Blacksmith Institute.
Researchers measured lead levels in soil and drinking water at 200 toxic waste sites in 31 countries then estimated the blood lead levels in 779,989 children who were potentially exposed to lead from these sites in 2010. The blood lead levels ranged from 1.5 to 104 µg/dL, with an average of 21 µg/dL in children ages four years and younger. According to Dr. Chatham-Stephens, first author of the study, these higher blood lead levels could result in an estimated loss of five to eight IQ points per child and an incidence of mild mental retardation in 6 out of every 1,000 children.
"The average blood lead level in an American child is approximately 1.3 µg/dL," said Dr. Chatham-Stephens. "Our research found an average predicted blood lead level of 21 µg/dL, which is very high. Lead has serious, long-term health consequences such as the potential to impair cognitive development in children and cause mental retardation." The condition of mental retardation is defined as having an IQ below 70.
"On a global level, this analysis highlights the importance of assigning more public health resources to identify, evaluate and remediate lead-contaminated toxic waste sites in these countries," said Philip Landrigan, MD, MSc, Dean for Global Health at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, one of the authors of the study. "In order to prevent further detrimental effects on neurodevelopment in children, these countries should create programs to identify toxic wastes and reduce lead exposure."
"This study is important because, to our knowledge, the burden of disease from these toxic waste sites has never been calculated before," said Dr. Chatham-Stephens. "We are showing that children who were chronically exposed to toxic waste sites in lower and middle income countries could have had high lead blood levels."
About the Department of Preventive Medicine
Mount Sinai's Department of Preventive Medicine is internationally renowned for excellence in preventive medicine, occupational and environmental medicine, community health, and environmental pediatrics. The department is among the largest medical school departments of preventive medicine in the United States. Its mission is to prevent disease, protect the environment, and promote health in all the communities Mount Sinai serves. It consists of 57 full-time faculty, 137 adjunct and voluntary faculty, and 265 staff.
The department's academic programs train medical students for residency programs in general preventive medicine and in occupational and environmental medicine. It also offer's a fellowship program in environmental pediatrics and the medical school's master's in public health (MPH) program.For more information, visit http://icahn.mssm.edu/research/programs/mount-sinai-global-health
Renatt Brodsky | EurekAlert!
WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
The more electronics steer, accelerate and brake cars, the more important it is to protect them against cyber-attacks. That is why 15 partners from industry and academia will work together over the next three years on new approaches to IT security in self-driving cars. The joint project goes by the name Security For Connected, Autonomous Cars (SecForCARs) and has funding of €7.2 million from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. Infineon is leading the project.
Vehicles already offer diverse communication interfaces and more and more automated functions, such as distance and lane-keeping assist systems. At the same...
A research team led by physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) has developed molecular nanoswitches that can be toggled between two structurally different states using an applied voltage. They can serve as the basis for a pioneering class of devices that could replace silicon-based components with organic molecules.
The development of new electronic technologies drives the incessant reduction of functional component sizes. In the context of an international collaborative...
At the LASYS 2018, from June 5th to 7th, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) will be showcasing processes for the laser material processing of tomorrow in hall 4 at stand 4E75. With blown bomb shells the LZH will present first results of a research project on civil security.
At this year's LASYS, the LZH will exhibit light-based processes such as cutting, welding, ablation and structuring as well as additive manufacturing for...
There are videos on the internet that can make one marvel at technology. For example, a smartphone is casually bent around the arm or a thin-film display is rolled in all directions and with almost every diameter. From the user's point of view, this looks fantastic. From a professional point of view, however, the question arises: Is that already possible?
At Display Week 2018, scientists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Polymer Research IAP will be demonstrating today’s technological possibilities and...
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
25.05.2018 | Event News
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
25.05.2018 | Event News
25.05.2018 | Machine Engineering
25.05.2018 | Life Sciences