Journal of occupational and environmental medicine

The Relationship Between Cognitive Impairment and Global DNA Methylation Decrease Among Aluminum Potroom Workers.

PMID 26147539


To investigate the relationship between cognitive impairment and global DNA methylation in aluminum (Al) potroom workers. A total of 366 Al-exposed workers were investigated, and their cognitive functions were assessed with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). Aluminum in serum was quantified using graphite furnace atomic absorption spectrometry. Global DNA methylation was analyzed in whole blood using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay-like reaction. Mini-Mental State Examination scores and global DNA methylation decreased with the increase of serum Al concentration. Forty-three mild cognitive impairment (MCI) people were diagnosed. Global DNA methylation of the MCI was lower than the non-MCI. Multiple logistic analysis showed that the Al-exposed workers had lower global DNA methylation and higher serum Al concentration and were at the higher risk of MCI. Long-term exposure to Al may cause MCI. Mild cognitive impairment was significantly associated with global DNA methylation in blood.