Chromium (Cr) is a common element in the Earth’s crust. It may exist in different oxidation states, Cr(0), Cr(III) and Cr(VI), with Cr(III) and Cr(VI) being relatively stable and largely predominant. Chromium’s peculiarity is that its behavior relies on its valence state. Cr(III) is a trace element in humans and plays a major role in glucose and fat metabolism. The beneficial effects of Cr(III) in obesity and types 2 diabetes are known. It has been long considered an essential element, but now it has been reclassified as a nutritional supplement. On the other hand, Cr(VI) is a human carcinogen and exposure to it occurs both in occupational and environmental contexts. It induces also epigenetic effects on DNA, histone tails and microRNA; its toxicity seems to be related to its higher mobility in soil and swifter penetration through cell membranes than Cr(III). The microorganisms Acinetobacter sp. Cr1 and Pseudomonas sp. Cr13 have been suggested as a promising agent for bioremediation of Cr(VI). This review intends to underline the important role of Cr(III) for human health and the dangerousness of Cr(VI) as a toxic element. The dual and opposing roles of this metal make it particularly interesting. An overview of the recent literature is reported in support.

The Double Face of Metals: The Intriguing Case of Chromium

Genchi G.;Lauria G.;Sinicropi M. S.
2021-01-01

Abstract

Chromium (Cr) is a common element in the Earth’s crust. It may exist in different oxidation states, Cr(0), Cr(III) and Cr(VI), with Cr(III) and Cr(VI) being relatively stable and largely predominant. Chromium’s peculiarity is that its behavior relies on its valence state. Cr(III) is a trace element in humans and plays a major role in glucose and fat metabolism. The beneficial effects of Cr(III) in obesity and types 2 diabetes are known. It has been long considered an essential element, but now it has been reclassified as a nutritional supplement. On the other hand, Cr(VI) is a human carcinogen and exposure to it occurs both in occupational and environmental contexts. It induces also epigenetic effects on DNA, histone tails and microRNA; its toxicity seems to be related to its higher mobility in soil and swifter penetration through cell membranes than Cr(III). The microorganisms Acinetobacter sp. Cr1 and Pseudomonas sp. Cr13 have been suggested as a promising agent for bioremediation of Cr(VI). This review intends to underline the important role of Cr(III) for human health and the dangerousness of Cr(VI) as a toxic element. The dual and opposing roles of this metal make it particularly interesting. An overview of the recent literature is reported in support.
2021
chromium; essential nutrient; toxic element; epigenetics; remediation
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11770/313581
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