Plasma manganese, selenium, zinc, copper, and iron concentrations in patients with schizophrenia.Biol Trace Elem Res 2004; 98(2):109-17BT
A number of essential trace elements play a major role in various metabolic pathways. Selenium (Se), manganese (Mn), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), and iron (Fe) are essential trace elements that have been studied in many diseases, including autoimmune, neurological, and psychiatric disorders. However, the findings of previous research on the status of trace elements in patients with schizophrenia have been controversial. We studied these elements in patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia and compared them with sex- and age-matched healthy controls. Plasma Cu concentrations were significantly higher (p < 0.01) and Mn and Fe concentrations were lower (p < 0.05 and p < 0.05, respectively) in schizophrenic patients than in controls. Se and Zn concentrations and protein levels did not differ between patients and healthy controls. These observations suggest that alterations in essential trace elements Mn, Cu, and Fe may play a role in the pathogenesis of schizophrenia. However, findings from trace element levels in schizophrenia show a variety of results that are difficult to interpret.