Exploring the role of copper and selenium in the maintenance of normal thyroid function among healthy Koreans

Min Joo Kim, Soo Chin Kim, Soie Chung, Serim Kim, Ji Won Yoon, Young Joo Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Selenium and iodine are trace elements well known to have important roles in the synthesis and metabolism of thyroid hormones. However, the effects of other trace elements on thyroid hormones are still inconclusive. We investigated the association between several trace elements and thyroid hormones. Methods: The data of 448 subjects who were measured for both, trace elements and TSH/free T4, at the Heath Checkup Center were retrospectively reviewed. The presence of thyroiditis (from thyroid echogenicity) and thyroid nodules were reviewed in the subjects who underwent thyroid ultrasonography. Results: Blood concentrations of manganese, copper, selenium, and molybdenum were associated with TSH or free T4. After adjusting for age, sex, BMI, smoking, and alcohol consumption, blood copper levels were positively associated with free T4 in both sexes and selenium levels were positively associated with free T4 in women. There was no association between trace elements and thyroiditis. Blood copper concentration had a weak non-linear association with the presence of thyroid nodules. Conclusions: This study demonstrated that blood concentrations of copper and selenium were significantly associated with free T4 in healthy Korean subjects with sufficient iodine intake suggesting their role in maintaining normal thyroid function.

Original languageEnglish
Article number126558
JournalJournal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology
Volume61
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2020

Keywords

  • Copper
  • Selenium
  • Thyroid function tests
  • Thyroid hormones
  • Trace elements

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