Zinc and endothelial function

C. McClain, P. Morris, B. Hennig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Zinc (Zn), an essential trace element, has antioxidant functions, stabilizes membranes, and plays a role in the activity of a host of Zn metalloenzymes. Zn deficiency has been shown to increase erythrocyte fragility, decrease the Zn content of the erythrocyte membrane, and alter erythrocyte membrane fluidity. Recent studies have shown that Zn deficiency induced by various mechanisms disrupts endothelial barrier cell function in vitro, and this was corrected with Zn supplementation. Moreover, physiological amounts of Zn attenuated the barrier dysfunction produced by the inflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor. These data have important implications for acute vascular processes, e.g., adult respiratory distress syndrome, and chronic vascular processes, e.g., atherosclerosis. The mechanisms by which Zn may affect endothelial cell function and attenuate cytokine induced endothelial cell dysfunction are important areas of continuing investigation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-120
Number of pages4
Issue number1 SUPPL.
StatePublished - 1995


  • atherosclerosis
  • endothelial barrier function
  • tumor necrosis factor
  • zinc deficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


Dive into the research topics of 'Zinc and endothelial function'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this