by Savitha C Muppala on  August 31, 2006 at 11:10 AM Research News
Is the permissible level of lead in blood actually safe?
The permissible upper limit for lead levels in the blood as stipulated by the WHO may actually be too high, says an Adelaide researcher. Though there are no two opinions about the potential harm that lead can cause, especially in children, the permissible limit needs to be absolutely clear.

The effects of lead poisoning are pretty well known. Children may not realize the full extent of brain development, if lead levels in the blood are high. Now, Adelaide University Associate Professor Peter Baghurst armed with a federal grant will be overseeing tests on hundred and fifty children, measuring brain development of the subjects to verify the prevailing, recommended upper limit of 10 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood. Children between the ages of seven and eight in Broken Hill in New South Wales and Port Pirie is South Australia, will participate in this examination.

Associate Professor Baghurst, expressing the importance of these tests, in raising healthy children said, "There's quite an active lobby group that claims that maybe there are still some harmful effects occurring below the level of lead exposure that we always thought, up till now, was safe. We are going to do some standard IQ testing and there will also be some rather fun computer games testing a number of fundamental abilities."

Source: Medindia

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