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The Potential for Zinc Stable Isotope Techniques and Modelling to Determine Optimal Zinc Supplementation

1
CSIRO Food and Nutrition Flagship, Gate 13, Kintore Ave, Adelaide SA 5000, Australia
2
School of Medical Sciences, Faculty of Health Sciences, The University of Adelaide, Adelaide SA 5005, Australia
3
Flinders University of South Australia, Bedford Park, GPO Box 2100, Adelaide SA 5001, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Nutrients 2015, 7(6), 4271-4295; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu7064271
Received: 30 March 2015 / Accepted: 18 May 2015 / Published: 29 May 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Zinc and Human Health)
It is well recognised that zinc deficiency is a major global public health issue, particularly in young children in low-income countries with diarrhoea and environmental enteropathy. Zinc supplementation is regarded as a powerful tool to correct zinc deficiency as well as to treat a variety of physiologic and pathologic conditions. However, the dose and frequency of its use as well as the choice of zinc salt are not clearly defined regardless of whether it is used to treat a disease or correct a nutritional deficiency. We discuss the application of zinc stable isotope tracer techniques to assess zinc physiology, metabolism and homeostasis and how these can address knowledge gaps in zinc supplementation pharmacokinetics. This may help to resolve optimal dose, frequency, length of administration, timing of delivery to food intake and choice of zinc compound. It appears that long-term preventive supplementation can be administered much less frequently than daily but more research needs to be undertaken to better understand how best to intervene with zinc in children at risk of zinc deficiency. Stable isotope techniques, linked with saturation response and compartmental modelling, also have the potential to assist in the continued search for simple markers of zinc status in health, malnutrition and disease. View Full-Text
Keywords: zinc; diarrhoea; kinetics; stable isotope; modelling; child health; global health zinc; diarrhoea; kinetics; stable isotope; modelling; child health; global health
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Tran, C.D.; Gopalsamy, G.L.; Mortimer, E.K.; Young, G.P. The Potential for Zinc Stable Isotope Techniques and Modelling to Determine Optimal Zinc Supplementation. Nutrients 2015, 7, 4271-4295.

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