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Determination of Zinc in Camel Skin Using Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy

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Zinc plays a major role in skin integrity, which can be affected by dromedary camels’ hard life conditions. Deficiencies in some trace elements especially in zinc can explain susceptibility of this species to skin diseases. Compared with ruminants, camel is already known for his relatively low zincemia. In order to assess dromedary camels’ skin zinc content, the present study was carried out in several provinces located in the south of Morocco where camel skin diseases are commonly observed. Zinc content in dromedary camel skin was determined using for the first time laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), method considered so far quick and simple with few or no sample processing. Collected data showed that zinc skin contents ranged between 115 ± 60 (for external side) and 94 ± 82 ppm (for internal side) with significant variability according to animals and to skin layers (external side versus internal side). Zinc skin content decreased from external to internal layers. Such preliminary results could be used to compare skin zinc nutritional level in healthy camels with those affected by skin diseases.

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Warm thanks to the Moroccan veterinary services and the staff of LSAMA laboratory in Tunis for their technical support especially Prof. Nejmedine Jaidane, Prof. Guy Taieb, and Prof. Zohra Benlekhdar.


The present study was achieved in the frame of PRAD project n°16867 entitled “Skin diseases and mineral metabolism in camel.”

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Correspondence to Bernard Faye.

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Kamili, A., Faye, B., Mbesse Kongbonga, Y.G. et al. Determination of Zinc in Camel Skin Using Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy. Biol Trace Elem Res (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12011-020-02073-3

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  • LIBS
  • Dromedary camels
  • Zinc
  • Skin
  • Morocco