Two faces of zinc in the brain
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Zinc plays an essential role in the brain by participating in the bulk of enzymatic and regulatory events. However, zinc may become deleterious for brain cells in excessive amounts that may be released following stress, seizures or ischemic conditions. The mechanism of zinc-mediated neurotoxicity has appeared to be rather complex not only because of concentration effects on the level of receptors to the various neuromediators but also owing to the variety of zinc functions throughout the brain and its involvement in maintaining the cytokine network, nitric oxide production and cell signalling pathways. This review highlights a hypothetical mechanism that postulates the presence of 2 main sites of zinc turnover in the brain with slightly different functional roles.
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TRACE ELEMENTS AND ELECTROLYTES, 2003, 20 pp. 1 - 4