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Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 1985 Feb;77(2):201-10.

Chronic low-lead exposure from birth produces deficits in discrimination reversal in monkeys.


Cynomolgus monkeys (Macaca fascicularis) were dosed from birth with 100, 50, or 0 micrograms/kg/day of lead. This protocol resulted in blood lead concentrations of 25, 15, or 3 micrograms/dl, respectively, before withdrawal of infant formula at 200 days of age. Blood lead concentration declined thereafter over the next 100 to 150 days to steady-state levels of 13, 11, or 3 micrograms/dl. At approximately 3 years of age, monkeys were tested on a series of three discrimination reversal tasks: nonspatial form discrimination, nonspatial color discrimination with irrelevant form cues, and nonspatial form discrimination with irrelevant color cues. The higher dose group was impaired relative to controls over the entire experiment (all three tasks combined), the two form discrimination tasks combined, and the form discrimination with no irrelevant cues. Deficits were most marked over the first several reversals. The lower dose group was impaired on the color discrimination task and on the last several reversals of all tasks combined. In addition, the higher dose group was impaired relative to the lower dose group over the entire experiment.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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