Well-documented evidence suggests that environmental and occupational expos
ure of toxic metals or metal-containing compounds can cause a number of hum
an diseases, including inflammation and cancer, through DNA damage, protein
modifications, or lipid peroxidation. This mini-review addresses the mecha
nisms of cell death induced by some carcinogenic metals, including arsenic
(III), chromium (VI) and vanadium (V). A possible contribution of reactive
oxygen species to metal-induced cell death is also discussed.