South Korean experts find way to remove lead from blood

HONG KONG (Reuters) - South Korean scientists may have found a way to remove dangerous heavy metals such as lead from blood by using specially designed magnetic receptors.

The receptors bind strongly to lead ions and can be easily removed, along with their lead cargo, using magnets, they wrote in an article in Angewandte Chemie International Edition, a leading chemistry journal.

“Detoxification could theoretically work like hemodialysis: the blood is diverted out of the body and into a special chamber containing the biocompatible magnetic particles,” they wrote in a statement.

“By using magnetic fields, the charged magnetic particles could be fished out. The purified blood is then reintroduced to the patient.”

Lead is a dangerous heavy metal and is especially toxic to children. Safe and effective detoxification processes are especially important.

The South Korean team, lead by Jong Hwa Jung at the Gyeongsang National University’s department of chemistry, managed to remove 96 percent of lead ions from blood samples using these magnetic particles.

Exposure to lead in developed countries is mostly a result of occupational hazards, from lead used in paint and gasoline. Outside of occupational hazards, children sometimes fall victim to lead poisoning. A child who swallows large amounts of lead may develop anemia, muscle weakness and brain damage.

Where poisoning occurs, it is usually gradual, with small amounts of the metal accumulating over a long period of time.

(Reporting by Tan Ee Lyn; Editing by Valerie Lee)


Related Posts:

By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Editor WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Heat is more likely to kill an American than an earthquake, and thunderstorms kill more than hurricanes do, according to a “death map” published on Tuesday. Researchers who compiled the county-by-county look at what natural disasters kill Americans said they hope their study will help emergency preparedness

Full Post: “Death map” shows heat a big hazard to Americans

By Scott Malone BOSTON (Reuters) - Mattel Inc, the world’s largest toymaker, reached a $12 million settlement with 39 U.S. states over lead-tainted toys that prompted a health scare in 2007, the Massachusetts attorney general said on Monday. The settlement, which came after a wave of scandals involving a slew of Chinese manufacturers, came near the peak

Full Post: States settle with Mattel on lead toys

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - New research suggests that airline pilots with long-term flying experience may be exposed to higher than average levels of radiation, resulting in more chromosomal translocations than usually seen. Further studies with longer follow-up and more subjects, however, will be needed to determine if these pilots are at increased risk for cancer,

Full Post: Chromosomal changes seen in long-term airline pilots

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Scientists have identified a mutant gene which appears to increase the risk of heart failure in South Asians, putting one percent of the world’s population at risk. In an article published in Nature Genetics, the scientists from India, Britain and the United States said 4 percent of people of South Asian descent

Full Post: Mutant gene puts South Asians at risk of heart disease

By Maggie Fox WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Songs that make our hearts soar can make them stronger too, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday. They found that when people listened to their favorite music, their blood vessels dilated in much the same way as when laughing or taking blood medications. “We have a pretty impressive effect,” said Dr. Michael

Full Post: Music to your ears? Music for your heart, too

Site Navigation

Most Read