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Low zinc and copper levels might cause spontaneous abortion
Date:9/28/2011

This press release is available in Spanish.

Scientists at the University of Granada have confirmed that a low plasma level of copper and zinc in pregnant women may be a factor associated with spontaneous abortion, a hypothesis that had not been confirmed to date, and which had never been proven in humans before.

For the purpose of this study, 265 pregnant women participated in the tests. From these 265 women, 132 had suffered a spontaneous miscarriage during that year. The rest (other 133) were women with evolutionary pregnancy, selected among pregnant women attending an scheduled birth control appointment. All of them underwent an ultrasound examination, and were taken a blood sample for laboratory tests. Additionally, they were asked to answer a questionnaire. In total, 131 variables were assessed from each participant.

Differences in plasma concentrations

The data obtained from the group of women who had suffered a miscarriage were compared with those obtained from the group of women with a normal process of pregnancy. The results proved the existence of differences in maternal plasma concentrations of copper and zinc. This finding suggests that maternal deficiency of one or both trace elements may be associated with the occurrence of spontaneous abortion, which opens new and interesting lines of research in this area so far unexplored.

Apart from the influence that copper and zinc may have on the occurrence of abortions, the research conducted at the UGR has provided relevant information about other variables previously studied, but significantly unknown as homocysteine, preconception and prenatal supplementation with iodine and folate, thyroid dysfunction or consumption of drugs in the first weeks of pregnancy.

This study was carried out by
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Contact: Jess Joaqun Hijona Elsegui
jesushijona@gmail.com
0034-649-756-963
University of Granada
Source:Eurekalert  

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