Effects of zinc supplementation on the phagocytic functions of polymorphonuclears in patients with inflammatory rheumatic diseases.


Peretz A, Cantinieaux B, Neve J, Siderova V, Fondu P




J Trace Elem Electrolytes Health Dis


The phagocytosis of blood polymorphonuclear cells (PMNs) was measured by cytofluorometry in 22 patients with inflammatory rheumatic diseases before and after a 60-day treatment with 45 mg zinc daily or a placebo, and the values were compared with those obtained in a group of healthy subjects. Plasma zinc was lower than controls before supplementation and phagocytosis assessed by the percentage of PMNs exhibiting phagocytic activity was significantly impaired. Zinc supplementation increased the percentage of phagocytic PMNs and the mean phagocytic activity, particularly in subjects with initial low phagocytosis. The impairment of PMN phagocytosis could therefore be corrected by zinc supplementation, but the clinical consequence of this stimulant effect remains unknown.