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Curr Environ Health Rep. 2017 Jun;4(2):229-243. doi: 10.1007/s40572-017-0141-4.

Arsenic and Immune Response to Infection During Pregnancy and Early Life.

Author information

1
Department of Environmental Health and Engineering, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Room W7033B, 615 North Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD, 21205, USA.
2
Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA.
3
Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, NY, USA.
4
Department of Environmental Health and Engineering, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Room W7033B, 615 North Wolfe Street, Baltimore, MD, 21205, USA. cheaney1@jhu.edu.
5
Department of Epidemiology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA. cheaney1@jhu.edu.

Abstract

PURPOSE OF REVIEW:

Arsenic, a known carcinogen and developmental toxicant, is a major threat to global health. While the contribution of arsenic exposure to chronic diseases and adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes is recognized, its ability to impair critical functions of humoral and cell-mediated immunity-including the specific mechanisms in humans-is not well understood. Arsenic has been shown to increase risk of infectious diseases that have significant health implications during pregnancy and early life. Here, we review the latest research on the mechanisms of arsenic-related immune response alterations that could underlie arsenic-associated increased risk of infection during the vulnerable periods of pregnancy and early life.

RECENT FINDINGS:

The latest evidence points to alteration of antibody production and transplacental transfer as well as failure of T helper cells to produce IL-2 and proliferate. Critical areas for future research include the effects of arsenic exposure during pregnancy and early life on immune responses to natural infection and the immunogenicity and efficacy of vaccines.

KEYWORDS:

Arsenic exposure; Children; Immune response; Immunotoxicity; Infection; Newborns; Pregnant women

PMID:
28488132
PMCID:
PMC5521214
DOI:
10.1007/s40572-017-0141-4
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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