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December 14, 1979

Zinc Metabolism in Sickle Cell Anemia

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Medicine (Drs Niell and Kraus), University of Tennessee Center for the Health Sciences, and the Department of Pathology (Dr Leach), Baptist Memorial Hospital, Memphis.

JAMA. 1979;242(24):2686-2687. doi:10.1001/jama.1979.03300240026019

Zinc metabolism was studied in 34 patients with sickle cell anemia in a steady state and in six patients during sickle cell crisis. The patients in steady state were found to have significantly lower plasma levels and higher urinary levels of zinc than the 50 healthy adults in the control group. During sickle cell crisis the plasma zinc levels dropped to a mean value of 0.54 μg/mL from a steady state value of 0.79 μg/mL. These results support the concept that zinc deficiency occurs in sickle cell anemia and that further drops occur in the serum zinc levels during sickle cell crisis.

(JAMA 242:2686-2687, 1979)