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Journal Article 
Lead induced oxidative stress decreases the effectiveness of the blood brain barrier 
Carey, J; Banerjee, A; Banks, WA; Ercal, N 
Free Radical Biology and Medicine
ISSN: 0891-5849
EISSN: 1873-4596 
is part of a larger document 3452652 SFRBM's 15th Annual Meeting: Program and Abstracts
Lead is a well known neurotoxin, especially for children. It has been found that children who are exposed to lead, having concentrations of as little as 10 μg/dL in the blood, score significantly lower on standardized tests. There have also been links with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Currently, the effect of lead in the CNS is well known. However, because virtually nothing is known about its effect on the blood brain barrier (BBB), this has been the focus of this study. Immortalized human brain microvascular endothelial cells (HBMVEC), were used as an in vitro model of the BBB. HBMVEC cells exposed to different concentrations of lead acetate had a concentration and time dependent effect on cell viability. in addition, cells exposed to lead acetate also had significantly lower GSH levels, and a higher intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) level, as compared to the control or sodium acetate treated cells, indicating that lead was inducing oxidative stress in these cells. in order to determine whether lead-induced oxidative stress in the BBB cell model disrupts the function of this barrier, two functional end points were analyzed: 1) transepithelial electrical resistance (TEER) and 2) dextran permeability assay. HBMVEC cells that were treated with different concentrations of lead had significantly lower resistance (measured by TEER) and higher permeability (measured by dextran permeability assay), as compared to the untreated group, indicating that lead was altering the permeability of BBB. Based on these data, it can be concluded that lead exerts oxidative stress and alters the function of the BBB. 
Society for Free Radical Biology and Medicine 15th Annual Meeting 
Indianapolis, IN 
November 19-23, 2008