Trace Elements in Hair of Healthy Children Sampled by Age and Sex

Hair trace element (TE) (Cr, Mn, Fe, Zn, Cu, Br, Rb, Sr, Pb) levels from 336 healthy subjects were measured by the Proton-Induced X-ray Emission (PIXE) method. The subjects were divided in three groups: 157 full-term neonates (75 male and 82 female), 86 children (41 male and 45 female) ages 6 to 11 yr, and 93 adolescents (51 male and 42 female) 11 to 16 yr old. Cu, Zn, Cr, and Br show an increase from birth to 8 yr and then decrease. Fe, Mn, and Sr strongly decrease up to 8 yr and then remain almost stable. Sex differences are present in Fe, Zn, and Br of children and in Cu, Cr, and Br of adolescents.

Laura Perrone, Renata Moro, Margherita Caroli, Rosario Dui Toro and Giancarlo Gialanella (Biological Trace Element Research, Vol. 51, 1996)