The objective of this study was to investigate of selenium (Se), zinc (Zn), chromium (Cr), and vanadium (V) levels in blood serum, hair, and urine of adult obese patients. A total of 199 lean and 196 obese subjects were enrolled in the study. Serum, hair, and urinary metal and metalloid analysis were performed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry at NexION 300D (PerkinElmer Inc., USA). The results established that obese subjects were characterized by 47% and 30% lower serum Cr and V levels compared with controls, respectively, whereas serum Se levels exceeded control values by 9%. In contrast, hair Cr, Se, and V content in obese subjects exceeded the control values by 51%, 21%, and 50%, respectively. In turn, hair Zn levels were found to be significantly lower by 11% compared with the lean control values. In urine, the levels of V and Zn were found to be 30% and 18% higher in obese patients. Prevalence of hypertension in obese subjects was associated with a trend for impaired Se and Zn levels. In a regression model adjusted for age, gender, hypertension, atherosclerosis, and glucose intolerance, serum Cr, V, and hair Zn were inversely associated with body mass index (BMI), whereas hair Se was considered as the positive predictor. Our data allow proposing that the observed alterations may at least partially contribute to metabolic disturbances in obesity. In turn, monitoring of Se exposure in a well-nourished adult population is required to reduce its potential contribution to obesity.
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