Maintaining Translational Relevance in Animal Models of Manganese Neurotoxicity

Cherish A. Taylor, Karin Tuschl, Merle M. Nicolai, Julia Bornhorst, Priscila Gubert, Alexandre M. Varão, Michael Aschner, Donald R. Smith, Somshuvra Mukhopadhyay*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Manganese is an essential metal, but elevated brain Mn concentrations produce a parkinsonian-like movement disorder in adults and fine motor, attentional, cognitive, and intellectual deficits in children. Human Mn neurotoxicity occurs owing to elevated exposure from occupational or environmental sources, defective excretion (e.g., due to cirrhosis), or loss-of-function mutations in the Mn transporters solute carrier family 30 member 10 or solute carrier family 39 member 14. Animal models are essential to study Mn neurotoxicity, but in order to be translationally relevant, such models should utilize environmentally relevant Mn exposure regimens that reproduce changes in brain Mn concentrations and neurological function evident in human patients. Here, we provide guidelines for Mn exposure in mice, rats, nematodes, and zebrafish so that brain Mn concentrations and neurobehavioral sequelae remain directly relatable to the human phenotype.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1360-1369
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2020


  • animal models
  • Caenorhabditis elegans
  • manganese
  • neurotoxicity
  • SLC30A10
  • SLC39A14
  • zebrafish
  • ZIP14
  • ZnT10


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