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Chemosphere. 2016 Apr;148:408-15. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2015.10.078. Epub 2016 Jan 30.

Children with health impairments by heavy metals in an e-waste recycling area.

Author information

1
Laboratory of Environmental Medicine and Developmental Toxicology, and Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Infectious Diseases and Molecular Immunopathology, Shantou University Medical College, Shantou University, 22 Xinling Road, Shantou 515041, China; Department of Epidemiology, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, 1 Hanzeplein, Groningen 9700RB, The Netherlands; Groningen Research Institute for Asthma and COPD (GRIAC), University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, 1 Hanzeplein, Groningen 9700RB, The Netherlands.
2
Laboratory of Environmental Medicine and Developmental Toxicology, and Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Infectious Diseases and Molecular Immunopathology, Shantou University Medical College, Shantou University, 22 Xinling Road, Shantou 515041, China; Department of Cell Biology and Genetics, Shantou University Medical College, Shantou University, 22 Xinling Road, Shantou 515041, China.
3
Department of Epidemiology, University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, 1 Hanzeplein, Groningen 9700RB, The Netherlands; Groningen Research Institute for Asthma and COPD (GRIAC), University Medical Center Groningen, University of Groningen, 1 Hanzeplein, Groningen 9700RB, The Netherlands.
4
School of Environment, Guangzhou Key Laboratory of Environmental Exposure and Health, Guangdong Key Laboratory of Environmental Pollution and Health, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China. Electronic address: gd_huoxia@qq.com.

Abstract

E-waste recycling has become a global environmental health issue. Pernicious chemicals escape into the environment due to informal and nonstandard e-waste recycling activities involving manual dismantling, open burning to recover heavy metals and open dumping of residual fractions. Heavy metals derived from electronic waste (e-waste), such as, lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), manganese (Mn), nickel (Ni), mercury (Hg), arsenic (As), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), aluminum (Al) and cobalt (Co), differ in their chemical composition, reaction properties, distribution, metabolism, excretion and biological transmission. Our previous studies showed that heavy metal exposure have adverse effects on children's health including lower birth weight, lower anogenital distance, lower Apgar scores, lower current weight, lower lung function, lower hepatitis B surface antibody levels, higher prevalence of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and higher DNA and chromosome damage. Heavy metals influence a number of diverse systems and organs, resulting in both acute and chronic effects on children's health, ranging from minor upper respiratory irritation to chronic respiratory, cardiovascular, nervous, urinary and reproductive disease, as well as aggravation of pre-existing symptoms and disease. These effects of heavy metals on children's health are briefly discussed.

KEYWORDS:

Children; Electronic waste; Exposure; Guiyu; Heavy metals

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