Introduction: Gastric adenocarcinoma and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) are the second and third common cancer in Iran respectively and are the leading causes of cancer deaths in the world. The status of serum zinc level in these cancers has not been fully evaluated.
Objectives: The aim of the study was to compare serum zinc levels in patients with ESCC and gastric adenocarcinoma as compared to patients with other non-digestive cancers.
Patients and Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted on 100 consecutive patients (10 patients with SCC of the esophagus, 40 patients with gastric adenocarcinoma and 50 cases with other non-digestive cancers as the controls). Morning blood samples were taken containing 5 ml of blood from both groups and immediately stored in the laboratory at 8°C until all samples were taken. After collecting, serum levels of zinc in the specimens were measured by 24i chemistry analyzer. The SPSS version 23.0 for Windows was used for the statistical analysis.
Results: The results of this study did not show a significant difference between mean serum level of zinc across the patients with ESCC and patients with gastric adenocarcinoma or those with other nondigestive cancers adjusted for age and gender (P > 0.05). However, a significant difference between the mean serum zinc level in patients with gastric adenocarcinoma and other non-digestive cancers was detected (P < 0.05).
Conclusion: Regarding the normal serum level of zinc in other non-digestive cancers and a decrease in zinc level in gastrointestinal cancers in our study, malnutrition which is common in all malignancies, has no effect on zinc deficiency in gastrointestinal malignancies, and zinc deficiency can be considered as a primary risk factor for the development of these two digestive malignancies.