Journal List > Korean J Occup Environ Med > v.12(3) > 1126081

Park, Park, Lee, Yi, O, Kim, Cho, and Kim: The Serum Copper and Zinc Concentration according to the Progression of Pneumoconiosis



Copper and Zinc, the trace elements of a living body, take a part in immunologic mechanism and induce the pulmonary fibrosis which is the pathologic progress of pneumoconiosis. This study was performed to assist the identification of the pathologic process of pulmonary fibrosis in pneumoconiosis.


The subjects of this study was 200 diagnosed persons as pneumoconiosis, of whom 100 persons was the visitors in the outpatients departments of pneumoconiosis and 100 admissive pneumoconiosis patients. The serum copper and zinc are measured and com pared.


The mean serum copper concentration of visitor group was significantly higher than that of control group, and that of stage V3 subgroup of visitor group was highest because of their advanced fibrosis. But, there was not the difference of serum copper concentration between patient and control group. We thought that the reason was poor nutritional and health status of the patient. The mean of serum zinc concentration of visitor and patient control was lower than that of control group. As the degree of pulmonary fibrosis was more severe from stage Vl, V2, V3 of visitor to stage Pl, P2, P3 of patient, the mean of serum zinc concentration was lower. The ratio of serum copper/zinc of visitor and patient was higher than that of control, and that of patient was higher than that of visitor. Those results showed that the ratio of serum copper/zinc ratio more greatly expressed the degree of progression of pneumoconiosis than only copper or zinc concentration by adjustment of nutritional and health status of the patient.


As above study results, the degree of pulmonary fibrosis of pneumoconiosis could be estimated by means of serum copper/zinc ratio.

Similar articles