Elevated brain aluminium and early onset Alzheimer's disease in an individual occupationally exposed to aluminium: a case report

J Med Case Rep. 2014 Feb 10:8:41. doi: 10.1186/1752-1947-8-41.


Introduction: Aluminium is a known neurotoxin and occupational exposure to aluminium has been implicated in neurological disease including Alzheimer's disease. Here we present the first comprehensive and unequivocal data demonstrating significantly elevated brain aluminium content in an individual occupationally exposed to aluminium.

Case presentation: A 66-year-old Caucasian man who died with Alzheimer's disease showed significantly elevated brain aluminium content, 2.98 (2.73) μg/g dry weight, n = 46, following occupational exposure to aluminium over a period of 8 years.

Conclusions: That the individual developed an early onset aggressive form of Alzheimer's disease suggests a role for aluminium in disease aetiology. That the exposure to aluminium was through occupational exposure to aluminium dust suggests a prominent role for the olfactory system and lungs in the accumulation of aluminium in the brain.