We studied the occurrence of the environmental radon daughters, 210Po (alpha particles), and 210Bi (beta particles), in the protein and lipid fractions of cortical gray and subcortical white matter from the frontal and temporal lobes of human brains of persons with Alzheimer disease (AD), persons with Parkinson disease (PD), smokers, or persons with no previous evidence of clinical neurologic disease (controls). We found a 10-fold increase in 210Po and 210Pb radioactivity in the protein fraction from both the cortical gray and subcortical white matter in AD and smokers, and a similar increase in the lipid fraction in PD. The pathognomonic distribution of the radon daughters to the lipids in PD and to the proteins in AD was inferred to reflect the increase of local chlorine availability to which radon daughters bound selectively. Cigarette smoking strongly increases radon daughter retention in the central nervous system.
The recent development of the analytical techniques offers the unprecedented possibility to study simultaneously concentration of dozens of elements in the same biological matrix sample of 0.5–1.0 g (multielement profiles). The first part of this essay entitled “Think globally… An outline of trace elements in health and disease” aims to introduce the reader to the fascinating field of elements, there importance to our nutrition, their essentiality, deficiency, toxicity and bioavailability to the body and their overall role in health and disease, including the genetic metabolic impairments. In the second part of the essay entitled “… and act locally. The multielement profile of depression” we aimed to show the potential of such a hair multielement profile analysis for the study of human depression in a randomized, double blind, prospective, observational, cross-sectional, clinical, epidemiological, and analytical study. The preliminary results of this ongoing study lead us to put forward the hypothesis that the metabolic origin of depression may be due to some “energostat” failure, probably located in the thalamus, and activated by several essential element deficiencies.
We studied the seasonal variation of the environmental radon progeny (214)Bi activity in the whole bodies (WB) of women and men participating in community-based studies at the Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center (GFHNRC), the (214)Bi background activity of the GFHNRC whole body counter (WBC) steel room, and ambient air (222)Rn concentration in the homes of Grand Forks residents, over the 1988-2004 time period. In this cross-sectional epidemiological study, (214)Bi activity in women and men, in the WBC steel room, and (222)Rn concentration in resident homes fluctuated such that the highest values were observed in winter and the lowest in summer, respectively. (214)Bi activity in the WB of human subjects was higher in women who have more (214)Bi activity per unit mass than men. Apart from their common seasonal pattern, human WB (214)Bi activity (lnBq) was comparatively higher than that for the ambient air (222)Rn activity in a human-equivalent volume of 72 L.
scite is a Brooklyn-based startup that helps researchers better discover and understand research articles through Smart Citations–citations that display the context of the citation and describe whether the article provides supporting or contrasting evidence. scite is used by students researchers from around the world and is funded in part by the National Science Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health.