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Original Research ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Pediatr. | doi: 10.3389/fped.2019.00431

Zinc supplementation promotes a Th1 response and improves clinical symptoms in less hours in children with pneumonia younger than 5 years old. A randomized controlled clinical trial

Jorge A. Acevedo-Murillo1, Miguel L. Garcia-Leon2, Veronica Firo-Reyes3, Jorge L. Santiago Cordova2, 4, Alejandra P. Gonzalez-Rodriguez2 and  Rosa M. Wong-Chew2*
  • 1Pediatric Hospital Coyoacán, Mexico
  • 2Faculty of Medicine, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico
  • 3Hospital General de México, Mexico
  • 4IMSS General Hospital of Zone 2A, Mexico

Background: Pneumonia caused 704,000 deaths in children younger than 5 years in 2015. Zinc is an important micronutrient due to its role in the immune function. Since 2004, WHO recommends zinc supplementation for children with diarrhea to shorten the duration and decrease severity. Zinc supplementation for children with pneumonia is controversial. Methods: A randomized, controlled, clinical trial was conducted, 103 children 1 month to 5 years old with pneumonia were included. Zinc or placebo were given during hospitalization. Clinical symptoms were recorded, a blood draw was obtained to determine serum zinc levels, lymphoproliferation and cytokines at the hospitalization and at the discharge of the patient; and a nasal wash was obtained to detect viral or bacterial pathogens by multiplex RT-PCR. Results: Zinc supplementation improved in less hours the clinical status (76+7 vs 105+8, p=0.01), the respiratory rate (37+6 vs 57+7, p=0.04) and the oxygen saturation (53+7 vs 87+9, p=0.007) compared to the placebo group. An increase in the IFNg and IL-2 after treatment in the zinc group was observed. Conclusions: Zinc supplementation improved some clinical symptoms in children with pneumonia in less hours and induced a cellular immune response.
The trial was retrospectively registered in identifier NCT03690583. URL

Keywords: zinc supplementation, Pneumonia, Children, Cellular Immune Response, Cytokines

Received: 14 Mar 2019; Accepted: 07 Oct 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Acevedo-Murillo, Garcia-Leon, Firo-Reyes, Santiago Cordova, Gonzalez-Rodriguez and Wong-Chew. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Rosa M. Wong-Chew, Faculty of Medicine, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Ciudad de México, Mexico,