Pediatric reference intervals for serum copper and zinc

Chia Ni Lin, Andrew Wilson, Bella B. Church, Shanna Ehman, William L. Roberts, Gwendolyn A. McMillin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Background: Copper and zinc are essential trace elements and nutrients, which have important roles in physiology and disease and as cofactors in many metabolic pathways. We established age- and gender-specific reference intervals for serum copper and zinc, with a large healthy pediatric population. Methods: A total of 2115 clinically healthy children, 85.4% Caucasian, were enrolled: 1098 boys and 1017 girls 0.5-18. y. Serum copper and zinc concentrations were measured by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (analytical measurement range: 10-400μg/dl for each). Statistical analyses and related calculations were performed using the STATA Statistical software and R software. Results: There were no significant effects of gender or fasting status. For copper, but not zinc, there were significant differences in the reference intervals by age. Based on the central 95% and 95% confidence intervals, the resulting reference interval determined for serum zinc was 64-124μg/dl. The age-dependent reference intervals for serum copper were 75-153μg/dl for those < 10.3. y, 64-132μg/dl for those 10.3-12.5. y and 57-129μg/dl for those > 12.5. y. Conclusions: Our data defined reference intervals for serum copper and zinc in an American, clinically healthy, pediatric population. © 2011 Elsevier B.V.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)612-615
Number of pages4
JournalClinica Chimica Acta
Issue number5-6
StatePublished - Mar 22 2012
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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