Neuropsychiatric disorders are induced by various risk factors, including direct exposure to environmental chemicals. Arsenic exposure induces neurodegeneration and severe psychiatric disorders, but the molecular mechanisms by which brain damage is induced are not yet elucidated. Our aim is to better understand the molecular mechanisms of arsenic toxicity in the brain and to elucidate possible ways to prevent arsenic neurotoxicity, by reviewing significant experimental, bioinformatics, and cheminformatics studies. Brain damage induced by arsenic exposure is discussed taking in account: the correlation between neuropsychiatric disorders and the presence of arsenic and its derivatives in the brain; possible molecular mechanisms by which arsenic induces disturbances of cognitive and behavioral human functions; and arsenic influence during psychiatric treatments. Additionally, we present bioinformatics and cheminformatics tools used for studying brain toxicity of arsenic and its derivatives, new nanoparticles used as arsenic delivery systems into the human body, and experimental ways to prevent arsenic contamination by its removal from water. The main aim of the present paper is to correlate bioinformatics, cheminformatics, and experimental information on the molecular mechanism of cerebral damage induced by exposure to arsenic, and to elucidate more efficient methods used to reduce its toxicity in real groundwater.
Keywords: arsenic; bioinformatics; brain; cheminformatics; nanoparticles.