Laboratory of Neurotoxicology


Laboratory of Neurotoxicology
Neuroscience Institute
Lithuanian University of Health Sciences
Eiveniu st. 4
Kaunas LT-50009

Phone:  +370 37 302948


Head of the laboratory:

Rima Naginienė, PhD,


Loreta Strumylaitė, PhD,

Dalė Baranauskienė, PhD,

Rima Kregždytė, PhD,

Vaida Šimakauskienė,

Arvydas Laukevičius,

Lionė Grabauskienė,

Aldona Švėgždienė,


Laboratory short history

Laboratory of Neurotoxicology was established in 2011 via reorganization of the Laboratory for Environmental Health Research. The latter Laboratory was established in 2005 after merger of Laboratory for Anthropogenic Factors Research and Laboratory of Ecological Monitoring of Human Health. These laboratories were established in 1989 for implementation of Lithuanian State Program of Ecological Monitoring. Researchers of the Laboratory were innovators in Lithuania of heavy metals and trace elements investigation and assessment in various biological media (human hair, blood, urine, and biopsy material, experimental animals, etc). The focus of Laboratory research is investigation of trace elements and their biomarkers in connection with public health, occupational health, and clinical research (e.g. trace elements equilibrium in patients with chronic kidney insufficiency, manganese as prognostic value of hepatic encephalopathy, disorders of copper metabolism in patients with Wilson’s disease, involvement of cadmium in pathogenesis of breast cancer, etc.).

There were 9 PhD thesis defended at the Laboratory during 1989-2011.


Research topic

Title: The role of trace elements in pathogenesis and prevention of brain tumours

Glioblastomas are the most common and the most aggressive malignant primary brain tumours in humans. In spite of multiple therapies the survival rate is only 12-14 months after diagnosis. These tumours are resistant to treatment and frequently implicate multidrug resistance phenotype. The mechanisms are not fully understood though it is known that metallothioneins (MT) might be involved in forming multidrug resistance. Metallothioneins are intracellular low molecular weight proteins, MTs function is not clear, but experimental data suggest MTs may provide protection against heavy metal toxicity, be involved in regulation of physiological metals (Zn and Cu) and provide protection against oxidative stress. The MT expression in some tumours correlates with degree of malignancy and tumourgrowth rate. It is established that single nucleotide polymorphism SNP of the gene MT2A is involved in accumulation of Cd, bioaccessibility of Zn, and Mg and Fe amount in blood. Therefore, the data on relation between trace elements, metallothioneins and MT gene polymorphism are lacking.


Main projects

2013-2015 – contribute in the Global grant project* VP1-3.1-ŠMM-07-K-02-060 „Gene-Environment Interactions Connecting Low Triiodothyronine Syndrome and Outcomes of Cardiovascular Disease (GET-VASC)” (leaded by habil.dr. R.Bunevičius)


International collaboration

Since 2006, the Laboratory is Lithuanian Satellite Centre of Trace Element Institute for UNESCO.


pdf-logo.jpg (90x68, 68x68)  2011 - 2015 main publications (125 KB)


Updated on 27th May 2016