L.N. Isankina Head Physician, Children's City Clinical Hospital № 5 named after N.F. Filatova (St. Petersburg) Yu.N. Lobanova Ph.D. (Biol.), Peoples ' Friendship University of Russia (Moscow) V.P. Volok Assistent, Peoples ' Friendship University of Russia; Junior Research Scientist, Chumakov Federal Scientific Center for Research and Development of Immune-and-Biologicical Products of Russian Academy of Science (Moscow) E-mail: V.I. Kulesh Physician, ANO Centre for Biotic Medicine (Moscow) A.V. Skalny Dr.Sc. (Med.), Professor, Peoples ' Friendship University of Russia (Moscow); Trace Element - Institute for UNESCO (Lyon, France)

Both toxic and essential elements may play a significant role in the immune system disturbances in frequently ill children (FIC), but the age de-pendency of this influence is not well understood. Aim. The goal of this study was to measure the levels of clinically relevant essential and toxic elements in hair of FIC and to assess their corre-lation with the age of the subjects. Materias and Methods. Hair samples of 200 children were assayed for the levels of chemical elements using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) on a NexION 300D spectrometer after microwave decomposition. Results. In comparison with healthy children, the younger group of FIC (2 to 7 y/o) was characterized by a significant increase in the hair levels of arsenic (+ 24%), selenium (+ 11%) and potassium (2.5 times), while the zinc level was lower (- 27%). In the group of FIC over 7 years old the level of arsenic was similarly higher than in the control group (+ 30%). A significant increase of the levels of calcium (+ 27%), cobalt (+ 50%) and selenium (+ 18%) relative to the corresponding control values was found only for the older group. Correlation analysis demonstrated that high susceptibility to colds is associated with changes in the age dynamics of the elemental profile. Conclusions. Obtained results indicate the existence of pronounced age-dependent disturbances in the elemental status of children susceptible to frequent respiratory infections.

frequently ill children
respiratory infections
trace elements
toxic elements

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