Essential minerals and heavy elements assay in the scalp hair of Jordanian children with specific language impairment compared to their fluent control

Mahmoud Ahmad Bashtawi O’la AL-Fawares Ayat Hussein B. Rashaid Mazin Taha Alqhazo   

Open Access   

Published:  Aug 26, 2023

DOI: 10.7324/JAPS.2023.100489

During the past four decades, the number of children diagnosed with specific language impairment (SLI) has increased. The factors contributing to SLI are not completely identified; therefore, more studies and consensus on the pathophysiological etiologies of this disorder are essential. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the levels of five essential minerals, iron (Fe), potassium (K), manganese (Mn), magnesium (Mg), and zinc (Zn), and evaluate 9 heavy metals, aluminium (Al), barium (Ba), cadmium (Cd), chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni), lithium (Li), lead (Pb), indium (In), and strontium (Sr), in the scalp hair of 39 Jordanian children with SLI compared with 37 fluent children group. Hair samples were cut, washed, dried, pulverized, digested, and analyzed by inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Results indicated that the Zn level was significantly lower in hair samples of the SLI group compared to the fluent group (p = 0.02). In the SLI group, significant positive correlations were noted between Zn and Mn (p = 0.04), Al and Li (p = 0.05), as well as between Fe and Mn (p < 0.001). Regarding the impact of gender, fluent control girls had significantly (p = 0.04) higher levels of K than SLI girls, while fluent control boys had significantly (p = 0.003) higher levels of Mg than SLI boys. The findings could help increase the understanding of SLI aetiology. Additionally, element profiling in hair may offer a nutritional and environmental tracking tool with a wider time window to guide the provision of essential elements and chelating toxic elements as a treatment intervention for children with SLI.

Keyword:     Specific language impairment essential minerals zinc heavy metals hair ICP-MS


Bashtawi MA, AL-Fawares O, Rashaid AHB, Alqhazo MT. Essential minerals and heavy elements assay in the scalp hair of Jordanian children with specific language impairment compared to their fluent control. J Appl Pharm Sci, 2023.

Copyright: © The Author(s). This is an open-access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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