ms patients tend to be low in zinc. low zinc status is associated with higher rates of bacterial infection.
Volume 12, Issue 7, Pages 515-518 (July 1996)
Zinc levels and infections in hospitalized patients with AIDS
Impaired cellular and humoral immunity and phagocytic function have been attributed to zinc deficiency. This study examined the association between low serum zinc concentration and opportunistic infections in hospitalized patients with the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). We examined the records from all 505 inpatient consultations performed by our Nutrition Service from May 1992 through June 1994. The medical records from all 228 patients with AIDS with known serum zinc levels (determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometry) were reviewed. The length of HIV seropositivity, most recent CD4 count, presence of diarrhea, and degree of malnutrition were noted. The principal diagnosis accounting for the admission was grouped according to the type of infection: Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia (PCP), viral, fungal, bacterial, and other. Sixty-seven patients (29%) had abnormally low serum zinc levels (LSZ < 55 μg/dL), 49 patients (21%) had borderline low serum zinc (BSZ ≥ 55 and ≤ 65 μg/dL), and 112 (49%) patients had normal serum zinc levels (NSZ > 65 μg/dL). There was no significant difference among the groups in CD4 count, length of HIV seropositivity, presence of diarrhea, or severity of malnutrition. Patients with zinc deficiency (LSZ) had a significantly higher incidence of bacterial infection than did patients with normal zinc. Patients with borderline zinc levels had an intermediate incidence of bacterial infection. There were no significant differences among the three groups in the incidence of PCP, viral, or fungal infections. Severe zinc deficiency was noted in 29% and borderline levels in an additional 21% of hospitalized AIDS patients. A low zinc level was not associated with the length of HIV seropositivity, CD4 count, or degree of malnutrition. Hypozincemia was associated with an increased incidence of concomitant systemic bacterial infections
using conversion factor 0.153 these cutoffs for low, and normal zinc levels given above, we get:
low: 55 μg/dL * 0.153 = 8.415 umol/L
"normal": 65 μg/dL * 0.153 = 9.945 umol/L
both those numbers are about half the zinc level you see in (thai) healthy controls. (ie tight averages around 18 umol/L - but keep in mind that thai diet is low- to no- gluten.. without the zinc drain caused by gluten consumption, and the high zinc content of common thai food ingredients like oyster sauce, it's easier for them to achieve a healthy zinc level with diet alone).
posted dec 24 2009
Galvanising forces in vascular health and disease: is dietary zinc protective?