, Volume 34, Issue 4, pp 333-342

Heavy metal localization and age related accumulation in the rat nervous system

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A modified sulfide-silver method was used to demonstrate tissue bound heavy metals in the rat brain at various ages. An accumulation of sulfide-silver positive material was found to accompany aging, indicating heavy metal accumulation. This was verified by quantitative analysis using atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Iron appears to be the most important heavy metal. Besides differences between various ages, regional variations in heavy metal contents could constantly be shown. The heavy metals appear, at least in part, to be located in lysosomes. A heavy metal influence on the lysosomal membrane permeability is discussed.

Supported by the Swedish Medical Research Council grant No. 12X-2037.