Fluoride Action Network

Abstract

Due to many advantages Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans) has become a preferred model of choice in many fields, including neurodevelopmental toxicity studies. This review discusses the benefits of using C. elegans as an alternative to mammalian systems and gives examples of the uses of the nematode in evaluating the effects of major known neurodevelopmental toxins, including manganese, mercury, lead, fluoride, arsenic and organophosphorus pesticides. Reviewed data indicates numerous similarities with mammals in response to these toxins. Thus, C. elegans studies have the potential to predict possible effects of developmental neurotoxicants in higher animals, and may be used to identify new molecular pathways behind neurodevelopmental disruptions, as well as new toxicants.