Objective: To compare the levels of some selected essential and toxic metals in type 2 diabetic (T2D) patients and non-diabetic (ND) healthy controls. Furthermore, study aims to evaluate the possible interrelationship of metals in urine of type 2 diabetic (T2D) patients and non-diabetic (ND) healthy controls.
Methods: The study was conducted at Diabetes and Cardio-Metabolic Disorder (D&C-MD) Laboratory, Health Biotechnology Division, National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE), Faisalabad, Pakistan, which comprised of T2D patients and an equal number of ND healthy controls. Two biofluids i.e. blood and urine samples of diabetes and control subjects were considered. Magnesium (Mg), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), lead (Pb), nickel (Ni), manganese (Mn), iron (Fe) and zinc (Zn) levels were measured in urine samples of both groups. Metal concentrations were assessed by atomic absorption spectrophotometry, whereas biochemical parameters in sera of the study subjects were estimated using commercial kits on Microlab-300. Graph Pad Prism 5 was used for statistical analyses.
Results: There were 49 T2D patients with an average age of 53.5±10.4 years and 49 ND healthy controls with a mean age of 45.2±9.2 years. Fasting serum glucose and triglycerides were significantly (p<0.05) higher in diabetic relative to their non-diabetic control subjects. The levels of Mg, Zn and Pb were found to be significantly higher (p<0.05), while Fe was decreased more than 30 percent in urine samples of T2D patients compared to the ND control group. Cu, Cr, Mn and Ni manifested no change. A significant positive correlation of Pb with Zn (r=0.3284, p=0.02) and Mn (r=0.3648, p=0.01) was found in T2D patients.
Conclusions: An imbalance in the levels of selected metals was observed in urines of type 2 diabetes when compared with controls. Furthermore, statistical results revealed positive correlations between toxic metal Pb with essential trace elements i.e. Mn and Zn. Thus it could be concluded that toxic metals, especially Pb may have a role in renal dysfunction with successive loss of essential metals such as Zn and Mn through urination.
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