Developmental considerations of neurotoxic exposures

Neurol Clin. 2000 Aug;18(3):541-62. doi: 10.1016/s0733-8619(05)70210-3.


In this article, the authors provide a conceptual framework in which to consider alternative approaches to identify the developmental consequences of exposing the developing brain to neurotoxic substances. Concepts underlying brain development and issues regarding neurobehavioral testing in children are reviewed. In addition, the authors selectively review preclinical data identifying mechanisms contributing to neurobehavioral compromise, and clinical data identifying deficits resulting from exposure to two classes of neurotoxins: exposure to drugs of abuse, including alcohol, nicotine, and cocaine; and exposure to environmental agents, including lead, methyl-mercury, PCBs, and organophosphorus compounds.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain / drug effects
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Developmental Disabilities / chemically induced*
  • Developmental Disabilities / classification
  • Developmental Disabilities / diagnosis
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Neurotoxicity Syndromes / classification
  • Neurotoxicity Syndromes / diagnosis
  • Neurotoxicity Syndromes / etiology*
  • Neurotoxins / adverse effects*
  • Neurotoxins / classification
  • Pregnancy
  • Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects


  • Neurotoxins