Journal List > Korean J Occup Environ Med > v.12(3) > 1126078

Park, Choi, Kweon, Hong, and Chang: Reference Values of Cadmium in Kidney and Liver in Korean



Cadmium (Cd), a toxic and non-essential metal, is recognized as a human carcinogen, which has a tendency to accumulate in the human body. The levels of Cd in renal cortex and liver are good indicators as an index of Cd exposure in the general population. In this study, we present an estimation of reference Cd levels in tissue (renal cortex and liver) and total body burden in the general population of Korea.


Cd and zinc (Zn) were analyzed in renal cortex and liver from 254 autopsies (male : 188 cases, female : 66 cases) aged 0 to 87 years.


Geometric mean concentration of Cd was 27.4 and 3.1 ua/g wet weight in renal cortex and liver, respectively. The level of Zn in renal cortex and liver was 35.4 and 42. 6 v/g wet weight, respectively. The result suggests that kidney is the target organ for Cd accumulation. The accumulation of Cd in renal cortex was age-dependent with a biphasic pattern. The level of Cd in renal cortex increased with age up to the fifties, and then leveled off thereafter. Based on the data, the regression model for Cd accumulation in renal cortex by age is predicted by : Log KCd = 0. 2325 + 0. 0553 Age 0. 0005 Age. The highest Cd accumulation in renal cortex of Koreans was estimated at 43. 3 ua/g wet weight at 50. 8 years old. In addition, the total Cd body burden by age was estimated by the following equation: Total Cd Body Burden = -4. 5948 + l. 2278 Age - 0. 0121 Age. The highest body burden of Cd was estimated at 26. 5 mg at age 50. 7 years in the Korean general population. The positive correlation between Zn and Cd was observed in renal cortex and liver.


The level of Cd exposure in Korean was found to be lower than in Japanese, but same as or higher than in American and Europeans.

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