Metal Toxicology

Ebany J. Martinez-Finley, Sam Caito, Stephanie Fretham, Pan Chen, Michael Aschner

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Metals are widespread in the environment due to their presence in the Earth's crust and their use in anthropogenic applications. Waste runoff, eruption of volcanoes and the erosion of natural deposits are the most prominent natural sources. Metals can interact with many cellular components, leading to their toxicity in human cells and causing a variety of effects ranging from neurological diseases and cancer to death. Metals have been used for centuries because of their distinct properties. In this chapter, an overview will be provided of the effects of exposure to metals on human health, and their distribution and metabolism in the body will be described. The properties of metals that determine their reactivity and deleterious biological effects will also be depicted, and their mechanisms of action, whether the disruption of cell signaling and oxidative stress or the disruption of proteins and DNA, will be explored. A description of the methodologies and technologies used to study metals and to detect their presence in biological systems will also be provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMammalian Toxicology
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9781118683484
ISBN (Print)9781119940418
StatePublished - Mar 27 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Administration
  • Arsenic
  • Distribution
  • Human health effects
  • Mercury
  • Metals
  • Oxidative stress
  • Zinc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Chemical Engineering


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