Exposure to potentially harmful chemicals is a reality of life. Our ancestors, faced with naturally occurring toxins, evolved mechanisms to detoxify and expel damaging substances. In the modern world, our bodies regularly process chemicals, from medicines and food additives to agricultural and industrial chemicals, to protect our tissues from harm.
As the organs responsible for metabolizing and excreting toxic chemicals, the liver and kidneys bear the brunt of this exposure and are at the highest risk for toxin-induced damage. Understanding how these organs respond to, or are damaged by, toxins is of particular importance in pharmaceutical development and public health research.