Neurobehavioral effects of arsenic exposure among secondary school children in the Kandal Province, Cambodia

Sao Vibol, Jamal Hisham Hashim, Sukiman Sarmani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The research was carried out at 3 study sites with varying groundwater arsenic (As) levels in the Kandal Province of Cambodia. Kampong Kong Commune was chosen as a highly contaminated site (300-500. μg/L), Svay Romiet Commune was chosen as a moderately contaminated site (50-300. μg/L) and Anlong Romiet Commune was chosen as a control site. Neurobehavioral tests on the 3 exposure groups were conducted using a modified WHO neurobehavioral core test battery. Seven neurobehavioral tests including digit symbol, digit span, Santa Ana manual dexterity, Benton visual retention, pursuit aiming, trail making and simple reaction time were applied. Children's hair samples were also collected to investigate the influence of hair As levels on the neurobehavioral test scores. The results from the inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) analyses of hair samples showed that hair As levels at the 3 study sites were significantly different (p<0.001), whereby hair samples from the highly contaminated site (n=157) had a median hair As level of 0.93. μg/g, while the moderately contaminated site (n=151) had a median hair As level of 0.22. μg/g, and the control site (n=214) had a median hair As level of 0.08. μg/g. There were significant differences among the 3 study sites for all the neurobehavioral tests scores, except for digit span (backward) test. Multiple linear regression clearly shows a positive significant influence of hair As levels on all the neurobehavioral test scores, except for digit span (backward) test, after controlling for hair lead (Pb), manganese (Mn) and cadmium (Cd). Children with high hair As levels experienced 1.57-4.67 times greater risk of having lower neurobehavioral test scores compared to those with low hair As levels, after adjusting for hair Pb, Mn and Cd levels and BMI status. In conclusion, arsenic-exposed school children from the Kandal Province of Cambodia with a median hair As level of 0.93. μg/g among those from the highly contaminated study site, showed clear evidence of neurobehavioral effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-337
Number of pages9
JournalEnvironmental Research
Volume137
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2015

Fingerprint

Cambodia
Arsenic
hair
Hair
arsenic
Manganese
Cadmium
school
exposure
effect
province
manganese
Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry
cadmium
test
Linear regression
Groundwater

Keywords

  • Arsenic
  • Cambodia
  • Groundwater
  • Neurobehavioral
  • Secondary school children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science(all)
  • Biochemistry

Cite this

Neurobehavioral effects of arsenic exposure among secondary school children in the Kandal Province, Cambodia. / Vibol, Sao; Hashim, Jamal Hisham; Sarmani, Sukiman.

In: Environmental Research, Vol. 137, 01.02.2015, p. 329-337.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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