Studies of marginal zinc deprivation in rhesus monkeys. VIII. Effects in early adolescence

M. S. Golub, M. Eric Gershwin, L. S. Hurley, Andrew G Hendrickx

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Arrested adolescent growth and sexual maturation are striking symptoms of severe dietary zinc deprivation. More general implications of mild or marginal Zn deficiency during adolescence are not knwon. Five marginally Zn-deprived (ZD) male monkeys (4 mg Zn/kg diet) were compared with five controls pair fed a diet containing 100 mg Zn/kg during early adolescence. Mean plasma Zn level were 38% lower in ZD group than in controls when evaluations began. During rapid growth plasma Zn decreased in controls but not ZD animals. ZD animals had delayed onset of accelerated weight gain and linear growth; loss of subcutaneous fat typical of early adolescence did not occur. ZD monkeys required two to three times more trials for both learning and reveral a visual discrimination task. Immune function was depressed 20-30% as reflected in early reduced proliferative response of peripheral lymphocytes and later lower immunoglobulin levels. Marginal dietary Zn deprivation affects growth and function in adolescence without producing frank developmental retardation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1046-1051
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


Dive into the research topics of 'Studies of marginal zinc deprivation in rhesus monkeys. VIII. Effects in early adolescence'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this