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Curr Med Chem. 2017 Nov 20;24(35):3879-3893. doi: 10.2174/0929867324666170801101448.

Cadmium, Organ Toxicity and Therapeutic Approaches: A Review on Brain, Kidney and Testis Damage.

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Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Messina, Messina, Italy.
Department of Biomedical and Dental Sciences and Morphofunctional Imaging, University of Messina, Messina, Italy.



Cadmium (Cd) is a heavy metal particularly hazardous for human health, as it is highly diffused and, therefore, a ubiquitous environmental toxicant. In fact, in the general population, the main sources of exposure are food, cigarette smoking, inhalation of ambient air, drinking water, contaminated soil or dust. Furthermore, an occupational exposure usually involves human during mining, fume inhalation or manufacturing nickel-cadmium battery, electroplating and paint pigments that utilize Cd.


We undertook a structured search in literature about Cd. This metal is noxious on the cells of many organs, among which the kidney, the testis and the brain will be considered in this review.


The toxic effects induced by Cd include many specific mechanisms, such as the oxidative stress, cellular death and inflammation. As no specific therapy for the prevention or treatment of the morbidity and mortality associated with Cd exposure is available, the state of the art of the therapeutic approaches is illustrated.


Nowadays, a therapy able to counteract Cd toxicity is still lacking and the development of new therapeutic agents is requested.


Cadmium; brain; kidney; testis; therapeutic approaches.; toxicity

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