Lead and essential trace element levels in school children: A cross-sectional study
Source: Annals of Human Biology, Volume 38, Number 3, May 2011 , pp. 372-377(6)
Publisher: Informa Healthcare
Abstract:Background: Nutritional status is thought to modulate susceptibility to lead (Pb) toxicity. The type and nature of these interactions needs to be investigated.
Aim: To assess the prevalence of sub-clinical Pb toxicity (defined by ≥≥ 10 _rm;g/dL blood levels) and trace element deficiencies (Iron (Fe), Zinc (Zn), Copper (Cu) and Magnesium (Mg)) and to find out their possible relationship, if any.
Subjects and methods: A cross-sectional survey was carried out in a total of 195 school children residing in urban (n == 65), urban heavy traffic (n == 65) and urban industrial (n == 65) zones of Hyderabad, India. Blood Pb, trace element levels, haemoglobin and -aminolevulinate dehydratase (-ALAD) activity was measured.
Results: High blood lead levels ( ≥≥ 10 _rm;g/dL) were observed in 54.3% of children while percentage prevalence of trace element deficiencies such as Fe (16.2%), Zn (68.6%), Mg (41.7%) and Cu (25%) were also high in children included in the study. Higher blood Pb levels and reduced -ALAD activity was observed in children residing in heavy traffic and industrial areas. Blood Pb levels but not -ALAD activity correlated inversely with serum Fe in heavy traffic and industrial children, respectively. Interestingly, -ALAD activity but not blood Pb levels correlated inversely with trace element levels only in urban children.
Conclusions: These results suggest higher prevalence of sub-clinical Pb toxicity and trace element deficiencies in urban children. Further, high blood Pb levels appear to be correlated with reduced -ALAD activity and iron status in Pb exposed children.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: 1Food and Drug Toxicology Research Centre 2: 2Micronutrient Research Group 3: 3Department of Clinical Studies 4: 4Department of Pathology, National Institute of Nutrition (ICMR), Hyderabad, India
Publication date: May 1, 2011