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Recent Trends of Zinc in Health and Chronic Disease

Zinc is widely recognized as an essential micronutrient with a catalytic role in over a 100 specific metabolic enzymes in human metabolism. Zinc deficiency was a major etiological factor in the syndrome of adolescent nutritional dwarfism, that had been identified mid-eastern countries. Zinc is one of the most ubiquitous of all trace elements involved in human metabolism and plays multiple roles in the perpetuation of genetic materials, including transcription of DNA, translation of RNA and ultimately cellular division. It is thus critical to understand the role of zinc in health and disease, especially during the vulnerable periods of growth and development. In severe zinc deficiency the symptoms are slowing growth and development, delayed sexual maturation, chronic and severe diarrhea, impaired wound healing, diminished appetite, impaired taste sensation.

The whole 5 pages article is available for download here.

Zinc deficiency is an important public health problem, Nutritionists have been concerned that zinc deficiency affects large numbers of women and children in India and worldwide. In recent survey by WHO, Zinc deficiency found most of the Indian population and Zinc supplement is used to commonly to enhance wound healing and treatment of pneumonia.
Zinc is an essential trace element for all forms of life. The significance of zinc in human nutrition and public health was recognized relatively recently. Zinc insufficiently has been recognized by a number of experts as an important public health issue, especially in developing countries. The prevalence and clinical consequences of zinc deficiency on growth delay, diarrhea, pneumonia, disturbed neuropsychological performance and abnormalities of foetal development.

 

Introduction

 

Zinc is a essential trtace elements for all forms of life. The significance of zinc in human nutrition and public health was recognized relatively recently. Zinc insufficiently has been recognized by a number of experts as an important public health issue, especially in developing countries.The prevalence and clinical consequences of zinc deficiency on growth delay,diarrhoea, pneumonia,disturbed neuropsychological performance and abnormalities of foetal development.

 

Historical perspectives of Zinc

 

The first major conceptual breakthrough came in 1961 with the hypothesis that Zinc deficiency was a major etiological factor in the syndrome of adolescent nutritional dwarfism that had been identified principally and extensively in mid-Eastern countries. This work made an outstanding contribution to the history of our recognisation of zinc as a micronutrient of practical importance in nutrition.

 

Functions of Zinc

 

On the cellular level, the function of zinc can be divided into three categories.

1.Catalytical

2. Structural

3.Regulatory

1. Catalytic

Nearly 100 different enzymes depend on zinc for their ability to catalyze vital chemical reactions. Zinc dependent enzymes can be found in all known classes of enzymes.

2. Structural

Zinc plays an important role in the structure of proteins  and cell membrane .The structure of proteins and cell membrane. The structure and function of cell membranes are also affected by zinc. Loss of zinc from biological membranes increases their susceptibility to oxidative damage and impairs their functions.

3. Regulatory

Zinc finger proteins have been found to regulate gene expression by acting as transcription factors. Zinc also plays a role in cell signaling and has been found to influence hormone release and nerves impulse transmission.

 

Zinc Deficiency

 

Up to one-fifth of the worlds people may lack sufficient zinc in their diet , while an estimated one-third live in countries considered at high risk of Zinc deficiency, warns a comprehensive new reporty by an international group of medical reserarchers WHO Task force of IAP has recommended use of Zinc in the tyreatment of diarrhea.

Severe Zinc deficiency

The symptoms of severe Zinc deficiency include

a.Slowing growth and development

b.Delayed sexual maturtation.

c.Chronic and severe diarrhea

d. Impaired wound healing.

e.Diminised appetite, impaired taste sensation.

Mild Zinc deficiency

Mild zinc deficiency has become apparent that milder zinc deficiency contributes to a numbert bof health problems. Moderate Zinc supplementation have demonstrated that mild zinc deficiency contributes to impaired physical and neuropsychological development and increased susceptibility to life- threatening infections in young children.

 

Risk groups

 

  1. Infants and children
  2. 2.pregnant and Lactating women.
  3. Patients receiving total parenteral nutrition.
  4. Older adults ( 65 years and older)
  5. Individuals with alcoholic liver disease increased urinary zinc excretion and low liver zinc levels.
  6. Individuals with inflammatory bowel disease, including crohns disease and ulcerative colitis.
  7. Individuals with severe or persistent diarrhea.

The whole 5 pages article is available for download here.

 

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