ASSESSMENT OF THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SOME TRACE ELEMENTS AND ANTIOXIDANT ENZYMES IN UNDER-FIVE CHILDREN WITH PROTEIN-ENERGY MALNUTRITION
This research is on Assessment of the relationship between some trace elements and antioxidant enzymes in under-five children with protein-energy malnutrition. Assessment of the relationship between some trace elements and antioxidant enzymes was carried out on 98 under-five children with protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) and 98 age- and sex-matched apparently healthy children (control). The malnourished children involve those with Marasmus, Kwashiorkor and Marasmic-kwashiorkor. Venous blood (2ml) was collected from both PEM children and control for biochemical analysis using standard methods. Results obtained show that mean serum total protein (55.76±3.95) and albumin (26.43±2.78) levels and superoxide dismutase (SOD) (1.87±0.32) and glutathione peroxidase (GPx) (42.38±5.03) activities in malnourished children were significantly lower (p<0.05) than in the control. Mean serum zinc (Zn) concentrations (8.37±4.25) in malnourished children were significantly higher (p<0.05) than in the control (5.14±2.39), but mean serum copper (Cu) concentrations in malnourished (2.40±1.12) children were lower than in the control (2.82±1.18). There were correlations between these serum levels of trace elements (Zn and Cu) and antioxidant enzymes (SOD and GPx) in children with PEM and control. Marasmus (SOD-Zn: 0.03, SOD-Cu: 0.16, GPx-Zn: -0.14, GPx-Cu: 0.05), kwashiorkor (SOD-Zn: -0.39, SOD-Cu: -0.39, GPx-Zn: -0.54, GPx-Cu: -0.31), marasmic-kwashiorkor (SOD-Zn: -0.31, SOD-Cu: -0.51, GPx-Zn: -0.41, GPx-Cu: -0.48) and control (SOD-Zn: 0.12, SOD-Cu: 0.07, GPx-Zn: -0.07, GPx-Cu: -0.08). This study points to the fact that children with PEM are predisposed to high oxidative stress due to an increase in free radical production and decrease in antioxidant defense system. Therefore, routine laboratory investigation of antioxidants should be done for effective management of PEM.
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