Academic journal article Environmental Health Perspectives

MeHg/PCB Combination Impairs Motor Skills in Young Rats

Academic journal article Environmental Health Perspectives

MeHg/PCB Combination Impairs Motor Skills in Young Rats

Article excerpt

Roegge CS, Wang VC, Powers BE, Klintsova AY, Villareal S, Greenough WT, Schantz SL. 2004. Motor impairment in rats exposed to PCBs and methylmercury during early development. Toxicol Sci 77:315-324.

Methylmercury (MeHg) and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) both accumulate in the environment and in the tissues of fish. Both compounds have been linked to neurological and motor deficits in humans in a number of epidemiological studies. A study byresearchers at the FRIENDS Children's Environmental Health Center, a five-institute research consortium based at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign College of Veterinary Medicine, provides new evidence that MeHg and PCBs act together to cause nervous system impairment. Among the researchers are NIEHS grantees Susan L. Schantz and Victor C. Wang of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The researchers exposed female rats to low doses of MeHg, a PCB mixture, a combination of the two compounds, or control conditions starting 4 weeks prior to breeding and continuing through 16 days after birth Of offspring. The offspring of the groups were run through a battery of three motor skills tasks that involve cerebellar functions. …

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