Selenium supplementation of symptomatic human immunodeficiency virus infected patients


The mean whole blood selenium levels in male San Diego, CA patients with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) are 0.123 ±0.030 μg/mL (n=24), and 0.126±0.038 μg/mL (n=26) in patients with AIDS-related complex (ARC), compared to 0.195±0.020 μg/mL (n=28) in San Diego healthy controls (males). To establish whether intestinal absorption of dietary selenium is impaired in AIDS or ARC, a supplementation trial was conducted in which 19 symptomatic HIV-antibody positive male patients with AIDS or ARC were taking 400 μg of selenium/d in form of selenium yeast for up to 70 d. The mean whole blood Se levels increased to 0.28±0.08 μg/mL after 70 d of supplementation, the selenium supplements were well tolerated. A rationale for adjuvant selenium supplementation of symptomatic and asymptomatic HIV carriers is proposed.

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Correspondence to Gerhard N. Schrauzer.

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Olmsted, L., Schrauzer, G.N., Flores-arce, M. et al. Selenium supplementation of symptomatic human immunodeficiency virus infected patients. Biol Trace Elem Res 20, 59 (1989).

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Index Entries

  • AIDS
  • selenium supplementation
  • whole blood SE levels