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Leadpedia - Information to prevent lead exposure

A common site on the health effects and prevention of lead exposure.


In the 2nd century BCE, Dioscorides noted, "Lead makes the mind give way." In modern times, lead was heavily used in paint and as a gasoline additive. Subtle brain damage in children, caused by even low levels of lead exposure, was recognized and acted upon only in the last 30 years. It is now well documented that even blood lead levels below 10 µg/dL can harm the developing brain.

The neuropsychiatric effects of lead (and mercury) exposure are discussed by Mark Filidei, of the San Francisco Preventive Medical Group, in an article, Toxic Metals and Mental Health.

Frequently asked Questions

Health Effects of Lead

Sources of Lead Exposure


Wheel weights



Bullets and Shot

Agencies doing work on lead

History of Lead Use and Exposure

Lead in paint

Lead in gasoline

Lead Paint removal

Teaching Resources

External Links

European, Asian, and International Agencies

North American Agencies

Non-Government Organizations

  • History of Lead Advertising. Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. (accessed: 16 April 2005). A look lead paint advdertizing 1900-1955, when the lead industry sought to counter negative publicity by developing a campaign to "Cater to the Children."
  • Clean Water Lead Testing Inc. (CWLTI) is non-profit, nationally certified testing service for lead, copper, and arsenic in drinking water (National Environmental Laboratory. Accreditation Conference) offered by the Environmental Quality Institute at the University of North Carolina. (accessed: 31 October 2004).
  • The Environmental Quality Institute (EQI). Conducts research on water contamination issues through the University of North Carolina at Asheville (UNCA). (accessed: 31 October 2004).
    EQI has a significant program on water testing and lead exposure prevention.
  • "Playing with Poison. Lead Poisoning Hazards of Children's Product Recalls 1990 - 2004" A report by Kids in Danger (Chicago based non-profit) - (pdf file) - primarily focuses on product safety for children.
  • The National Lead Information Center - Phone: 1-800-424-LEAD (424-5323)
  • Alliance for Healthy Homes. Protecting Children from Lead and Other Environmental Health Hazards. (accessed: 25 October 2004).
  • Washington Swan Working Group. An Affiliate of The Trumpeter Swan Society -Lead Poisoning. (accessed: 24 April 2003). Site has information on the lead poisoning of swans.

Teaching Resources

Powerpoint Presentations
Powerpoint Presentation on lead

"Converging Issues: Lead, Ethics, and Our Children's Potential". Department of Psychology and Center for Developmental Psychobiology, SUNY, Binghamton University Binghamton, NY. April 29, 2005.

"Lead and Child Development or Why the CDC Should Lower The Blood Lead Action Level From 10 to 2 mcg/dL". Out of Harm's Way: Preventing Toxic Threats to our Children's Health. Sponsor WPSR. October 15, 2005. Spokane, WA

ATSDR Environmental Health & Medicine Education - Lead


Markowitz, Gerald E. and David Rosner. Deceit and Denial: The Deadly Politics of Industrial Pollution. University of California Press, 2002.

Markowitz, Gerald and David Rosner. "Cater to the Children: The Role of the Lead Industry in a Public Health Tragedy, 1900-1955". American Journal of Public Health 90_, 2000.

Needleman, HL. "The Removal of Lead From Gasoline: Historical and Personal Reflections. Environ Research 84(1)_, 2000.

Hipkins, K. L., Materna, B. L., Payne, S. F., and Kirsch, L. C. (2004). "Family Lead Poisoning Associated With Occupational Exposure". Clinical Pediatrics 43, 845-949.

Jacobs, D.E., Clickner, R.P., Joey Y. Zhou, Susan M. Viet, David A. Marker, John W. Rogers, Darryl C. Zeldin, Pamela Broene, and Warren Friedman. "The Prevalence of Lead-Based Paint Hazards in U.S. Housing." Environmental Health Perspectives 110.

Jarosinska, D., & Rogan, W. J. "Preventing Lead Poisoning in Children: Can the US Experience Inform Other Countries? The case of Poland." Central Eurupoean Journal of Public Health 11, 192-197.

Lanphear, B. P., Vorhees, C. V., and Bellinger, D. C. (2005). "Protecting Children from Environmental Toxins". PLoS Medicine. Retreived on 1-16-07.

MMWR (2001) "Occupational and Take-Home Lead Poisoning Associated With Restoring Chemically Stripped Furniture - California, 1998. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. April 06, 2001, 50(13); 246-248. Retreived on 1-16-07.

Landrigan, Philip J, Clyde B. Schechter, Jeffrey M. Lipton, Marianne C. Fahs, and Joel Schwartz. "Environmental Pollutants and Disease in American Children: Estimates of Morbidity, Mortality, and Costs for Lead Poisoning, Asthma, Cancer, and Developmental Disabilities." Environmental Health Perspectives 110, July 2002.

Rogan, W. J., & Ware, J. H. "Exposure to lead in children--how low is low enough?" New England Journal of Medicine 348, 1515-1516.

Rogan, W. J., & Ware, J. H. "Intellectual Impairment in Children With Blood Lead Concentrations Below 10 Microg per Deciliter. Journal of Pediatrics 143, 687-688.

Rubin C.R., Emilio Esteban, Dori B. Reissman, W. Randolph Daley, Gary P. Noonan, Adam Karpati, Elena Gurvitch, Sergio V. Kuzmin, Larissa I. Privalova, Alexander Zukov, and Alexander Zlepko. "Lead Poisoning Among Young Children in Russia: Concurrent Evaluation of Childhood Lead Exposure in Ekaterinburg, Krasnouralsk, and Volgograd." Environmental Health Perspectives 110, June 2002.

Silbergeld, E.K. "Lead Contamination in the district of Columbain water supply. Oversight hearing by the committee on government reform. March 5, 2004.

Weisskopf, M.G., Wright, R O., Schwartz, J., Spiro, A., Sparrow, D., Aro, A., and Hu, H. (2004). "Cumulative Lead Exposure and Prospective Change in Cognition Among Elderly Men: The VA Normative Aging Study]. American Journal of Epidemiology 160, 1184-93.

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