Effect of reducing the phytate content and of partially hydrolyzing the protein in soy formula on zinc and copper absorption and status in infant rhesus monkeys and rat pups

Bo Lönnerdal, Lalith Jayawickrama, Eric L. Lien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

54 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Although soy formulas have been designed to meet the nutrient requirements of human infants, they also contain phytate, which may negatively affect trace element absorption. Objective: We evaluated the effect of removing phytate on zinc and copper absorption and status in infant rhesus monkeys and suckling rat pups and evaluated differences between intact and partially hydrolyzed soy protein. Design: In monkeys, regular and low- phytate soy formulas were fed exclusively for 4 mo and whole-body absorption and retention of 65Zn, 67Cu, 59Fe, 54Mn, and 47Ca were determined at different time points with a whole-body counter. Subsequently, zinc and copper absorption from several human infant formulas and the effect of phytate concentration were evaluated in suckling rat pups by using 65Zn and 64Cu. Finally, infant rhesus monkeys were fed low-phytate formulas with intact or hydrolyzed soy protein for 4 mo and plasma zinc and copper were measured monthly. Results: In the first monkey study, zinc absorption at 1 mo was higher from low-phytate soy formula (36%) than from regular soy formula (22%), whereas there was no significant difference between groups in the absorption of other minerals. Plasma copper was significantly lower in monkeys fed low-phytate soy formula from 2 to 4 mo. In rat pups, zinc absorption was significantly higher from low-phytate soy formula (78%) than from regular soy formula (51%) and hydrolysis of the protein had no significant effect. Phytate content or protein hydrolysis did not significantly affect copper absorption. In the second monkey study, plasma copper concentrations were highest in monkeys fed the low-phytate, hydrolyzed-protein soy formula. Conclusion: Reducing the phytate content and partially hydrolyzing the protein in soy formula had a beneficial effect on zinc and copper absorption and status in infant rhesus monkeys.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)490-496
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Volume69
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1999

Keywords

  • Copper
  • Hydrolyzed protein
  • Infant nutrition
  • Phytate
  • Rats
  • Rhesus monkeys
  • Soy formula
  • Zinc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science

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