Zinc (Zn) deficiency is a common aliment predicted to affect 17% of the world’s population. Zinc is a vital micronutrient used for over 300 enzymatic reactions and multiple biochemical and structural processes in the body. Although whole blood, plasma, and urine zinc decrease in severe zinc deficiency, accurate assessment of zinc status, especially in mild to moderate deficiency, is difficult as studies with these biomarkers are often contradictory and inconsistent. Hence, as suggested by the World Health Organization, sensitive and specific biological markers of zinc status are still needed. In this review, we provide evidence to demonstrate that the LA:DGLA ratio (linoleic acid:dihomo-γ-linolenic acid ratio) may be a useful additional indicator for assessing Zn status more precisely. However, this biomarker needs to be tested further in order to determine its full potential.
Bibliographical note© 2017 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
- Fatty acid
- Zn status