Toxic Effects of Lead, with Particular Reference to Porphyrin and Heme Metabolism

  • Shigeru Sassa
Part of the Handbuch der experimentellen Pharmakologie / Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology book series (HEP, volume 44)


Lead has been shown to interfere with the biosynthesis of heme in a number of in vitro systems and in experimental animals as well as in human beings. Several steps of the heme biosynthetic chain are subject to the toxic effects of lead. ALA-dehydratase and ferrochelatase, in particular, are two enzymes which are strongly inhibited by lead, leading to decreased heme synthesis.


Blood Lead Level Lead Poisoning Heme Biosynthesis Blood Lead Concentration Heme Synthesis 
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  • Shigeru Sassa

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