Cadmium pp 351-361 | Cite as

The Effect of Dietary Selenium on Cadmium Cardiotoxicity

Part of the Handbook of Experimental Pharmacology book series (HEP, volume 80)


Research over the last decade or so has demonstrated that chronic exposure of laboratory animals to cadmium (Cd), at levels compatible with current environmental exposures, primarily via food, results in cardiotoxicity. Furthermore, the adverse effects of Cd on the heart occur in the absence of concomitant damage to the kidney. The relevance of elucidating the biochemical mechanism of Cd cardiotoxicity is underscored by the realization that the current acceptable daily intake (ADI) for Cd of approximately 70 μg/day is based on a critical concentration of 200 μg Cd per gram tissue (wet weight) in the renal cortex. If, as the data in this chapter suggest, the heart is vulnerable to Cd concentrations which are orders of magnitude lower than those in the kidneys and, if these low heart Cd levels are associated with injury in the absence of renal toxicity, then the while question of the ADI needs to be reevaluated in the light of these findings. Of course, Cd cardiotoxicity would first have to be established in exposed human populations.


Selenium Deficiency Dietary Selenium Acceptable Daily Intake Keshan Disease Cadmium Feeding 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1986

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