Biomarkers. 2009 Mar 11:1-10. [Epub ahead of print]


The plasma zinc/serum copper ratio as a biomarker in children with autism spectrum disorders.


Faber S, Zinn GM, Kern Ii JC, Skip Kingston HM. The Children's Institute, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.



The frequency of zinc deficiency, copper toxicity and low zinc/copper in children with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) may indicate decrement in metallothionein system functioning. A retrospective review of plasma zinc, serum copper and zinc/copper was performed on data from 230 children with autistic disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-NOS and Asperger's syndrome. The entire cohort's mean zinc level was 77.2 mug dl(-1), mean copper level was 131.5 mug dl(-1), and mean Zn/Cu was 0.608, which was below the 0.7 cut-off of the lowest 2.5% of healthy children. The plasma zinc/serum copper ratio may be a biomarker of heavy metal, particularly mercury, toxicity in children with ASDs.


PMID: 19280374 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]




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