Environmental exposure to manganese in air: Associations with cognitive functions

Rosemarie M. Bowler, Erica S. Kornblith, Vihra V. Gocheva, Michelle A. Colledge, George Bollweg, Yangho Kim, Cheryl L. Beseler, Chris W. Wright, Shane W. Adams, Danelle T. Lobdell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

52 Scopus citations


Manganese (Mn), an essential element, can be neurotoxic in high doses. This cross-sectional study explored the cognitive function of adults residing in two towns (Marietta and East Liverpool, Ohio, USA) identified as having high levels of environmental airborne Mn from industrial sources.Air-Mn site surface emissions method modeling for total suspended particulate (TSP) ranged from 0.03 to 1.61μg/m3 in Marietta and 0.01-6.32μg/m3 in East Liverpool. A comprehensive screening test battery of cognitive function, including the domains of abstract thinking, attention/concentration, executive function and memory was administered. The mean age of the participants was 56 years (±10.8 years). Participants were mostly female (59.1) and primarily white (94.6%). Significant relationships (p<0.05) were found between Mn exposure and performance on working and visuospatial memory (e.g., Rey-O Immediate β=-0.19, Rey-O Delayed β=-0.16) and verbal skills (e.g., Similarities β=-0.19).Using extensive cognitive testing and computer modeling of 10-plus years of measured air monitoring data, this study suggests that long-term environmental exposure to high levels of air-Mn, the exposure metric of this paper, may result in mild deficits of cognitive function in adult populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)139-148
Number of pages10
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Air
  • Cognitive function
  • Environmental
  • Manganese
  • Neuropsychology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Toxicology


Dive into the research topics of 'Environmental exposure to manganese in air: Associations with cognitive functions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this