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August 1983

DiGeorge's Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Author Affiliations

Department of Pediatrics Zinc Research Unit (TUBİTAK) University of Ankara Medical School Ankara, Turkey

Am J Dis Child. 1983;137(8):806-807. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1983.02140340086027

Sir.—Four patients with clinical and laboratory features of DiGeorge's syndrome with a history of maternal alcoholism were described by Ammann et al in the article "The DiGeorge Syndrome and the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome" (Journal 1982;136:906-908). In the article (p 906), Ammann and colleagues stated, "Maternal alcoholism may result in the DiGeorge syndrome either as the single causative factor or in conjunction with other as yet unknown teratogens." They made this statement without a specific explanation. I would like to emphasize an important point that was not taken into consideration in their article, ie, the importance of zinc in human intrauterine development.1

In fact, Gordon et al1 referred to a possible association between fetal alcohol syndrome and maternal zinc deficiency. In addition, the zinc status of pregnant alcoholic women was analyzed by Flynn et al.2 These investigators demonstrated significantly lower plasma zinc levels in both maternal and