Behavioral effects of aluminum ingestion on animal and human subjects.
Pharmacology, biochemistry, and behavior
Abnormally high brain aluminum concentrations have been detected in hemodialysis patients who died of an unexplained encephalopathy. As a result, this study was undertaken to examine whether the ingestion of aluminum produces behavioral aberrations in non-dialysed human subjects and rats with ostensibly normal renal function. Rats were fed AlCl3 by intubation in varying doses, and tests measuring learning ability, visual temporal acuity, motor coordination and activity were administered. It was found that orally ingested aluminum is absorbed by rats and deposited in the brain. High brain aluminum levels are associated with rapid general activity, decreased ability to maintain roto-rod activity, and increased sensitivity to flicker. Behavioral tests were also given to elderly human subjects and performance correlated with serum aluminum level. High serum levels of aluminum in elderly humans are associated with impaired visuo-motor coordination, poor long-term memory, and increased sensitivity to flicker.
Aged, Aluminum, Animals, Behavior, Behavior, Animal, Brain, Electroretinography, Female, Flicker Fusion, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Motor Skills, Postural Balance, Rats, Wechsler Scales
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