Copper and Copper/Zinc Ratio in a Series of Cystic Fibrosis Patients

Marlene Fabiola Escobedo-Monge, Enrique Barrado, Carmen Alonso Vicente, María Antonieta Escobedo-Monge, María Carmen Torres-Hinojal, José Manuel Marugán-Miguelsanz, María Paz Redondo Del Río
Nutrients 2020 October 30, 12 (11)
Cystic fibrosis (CF) patients require a stable and sufficient supply of micronutrients. Since copper is an essential micronutrient for human development, a cross-sectional study was carried out to investigate the serum copper levels, serum copper/zinc (Cu/Zn) ratios, and their relationship with nutritional indicators in a group of CF patients. Anthropometric, biochemical, and dietary measurements, an abdominal ultrasound, and respiratory and pancreatic tests were conducted. Seventeen CF patients were studied (10 females, 59%), 76.5% of whom were ∆F580. Their mean serum copper (113 ± 23 μg/dL) was normal, and there was only one teenager with hypocupremia (6%) and two children with hypercupremia (18%). A significant association between serum copper and zinc levels was discovered. The Cu/Zn ratio was higher than 1.00 for 94% of patients, which is an indicator of an inflammation status. There was no significant correlation between the serum copper concentrations and respiratory and pancreatic function, respiratory colonization, and the results of the abdominal ultrasound. Linear regression analysis showed that serum copper had a positive association with both the Z-score body mass index (BMI) and mean bone conduction speed (BCS). Therefore, since 94% of CF patients had a Cu/Zn ratio > 1.00, this factor must alert us to consider the risk of zinc deficiency and high inflammatory response. The measurement of serum zinc alone does not show one's zinc status. However, the Cu/Zn ratio may be an indicator of zinc deficiency and the inflammatory status of CF patients.

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