Advertisement

Immunostimulating Effect of Zinc Supplements during Recovery of Severely Malnourished Children

  • P. Chevalier
  • R. Sevilla
  • L. Zalles
  • G. Belmonte
  • E. Sejas

Abstract

Pre-school children suffering from protein-energy malnutrition (PEM) show immunodeficiency (1) characterised by impaired cellular immunity (2, 3) and thymic involution (4) with simultaneous altered thymulin content (5) and activity (6). The initial high level of ‘null cells’ or immature T lymphocytes (7, 8) was reduced by half after incubation in vitro with thymulin (9, 10). This indirectly demonstrates the depressed lympho-differentiative capacity of thymic hormones in malnutrition states. In a longitudinal study, clinical and anthropometrical recovery (11) of severely malnourished children was reached in 5 weeks, while thymic recovery required 9 weeks (10). Relapses (12) occurred after “apparently healthy” children were discharged, because they were still immune-depressed. Therefore, along with clinical and nutritional interventions, an immuno-stimulatory treatment was tested to more rapidly restore cellular immunity (13). Although thymulin happened to be the initial candidate, it was discarded because of excessive cost and difficult use and zinc, as a thymulin cofactor (14), was tested first. Compared to previous studies on zinc supplementation in treatment of severely malnourished children (15, 16, 17), we used ultrasonography, a non-invasive technique, to quantify the thymic mass and its restoration, and monoclonal antibodies (MABs) to evaluate the level of immature lymphocytes (9,10).

Keywords

Zinc Supplementation Malnourished Child Initial High Level Immune Recovery Thymic Involution 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    R.K. Chandra, J. Nutr. 122, 597–600 (1992).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    L. Schlesinger and A. Stekel, Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 27, 615–620 (1974).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    S. Fakhir et al. J. Trop. Pediat. 35, 175–178 (1989).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    P.M. Smythe et al. Lancet. 2, 939–944 (1971).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    B. Jambon et al. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 48, 335–342 (1988).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    R.K. Chandra, Clin. Exp. Immunol. 38, 224–230 (1979).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    R.K. Chandra, Pediatrics. 59, 423–27 (1977).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    R.K. Chandra, Acta Paediatr. Scand. 68, 841–845 (1979).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    G. Parent et al. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 60, 274–8 (1994).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Ph. Chevalier et al. J. Nutr. Immunol. 3, 27–39 (1994).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    J.C. Waterlow, Protein Energy Malnutrition, Arnold, London (1992).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    B. Maire, In AFTER, no 11, T. Marek ed. Banque Mondiale, Washington, pp. 89–102 (1993).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    S.O. Olusi, G.B. Thurman and A.L. Goldstein, Clin. Immunol. Immunopathol. 15, 687–691 (1980).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    M. Dardenne et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. 79, 5370–5373 (1982).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    M.H.N. Golden, A.A. Jackson and B.E. Golden, Lancet. 1057-1059 (1977).Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    C. Castillo-Duran et al. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 45, 602–8 (1987).Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    L. Schlesinger et al. Am. J. Clin. Nutr. 56, 491–8 (1992).Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    J.C. Waterlow, Brit. Med. J. 3, 566–569 (1972).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    O. Brunser et al. in Desnutrición infantil, F. Monckeberg ed., INTA, Santiago, pp. 13–34 (1988).Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    M.M. Compton and J.A. Cidlowski, Trends Endocrinol. Metab. 3, 17–23 (1992).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1996

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. Chevalier
    • 1
  • R. Sevilla
    • 2
  • L. Zalles
    • 2
  • G. Belmonte
    • 2
  • E. Sejas
    • 2
  1. 1.LNT, ORSTOMMontpellier cedex 1France
  2. 2.Hospital Materno Infantil “German Urquidi”CRINCochabambaBolivia

Personalised recommendations