Selenium concentrations in the human thyroid gland
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Recently, we found that prediagnostic serum selenium concentration was significantly lower for cases developing thyroid cancer (n=43) than for controls. We assumed that redistribution of serum selenium into the affected tissue took place in the prediagnostic period. The present study was carried out to determine the physiological concentration of selenium in the thyroid, since very few data are available in the literature.
The concentrations of selenium in the thyroid (n=45) and liver samples from Norwegians who had died because of acute illness or accidents were determined by hydride generation atomic absorption spectrometry.
The mean selenium concentration was found to be 0.72±0.44 μg/g in the thyroid and 0.45±0.11 μg/g in the liver tissue. The surprisingly high concentration of selenium in apparently normal thyroids indicates that selenium has important functions in this organ. The remarkably broad range, together with the observation that no significant correlation exists between thyroid and liver concentrations, suggest that factors other than the selenium status are important determinants for the selenium concentration in the thyroid gland. This observation is consistent with our hypothesis that in carcinogenesis, prediagnostic processes influence the serum-/thyroid-ratio of selenium.
Index EntriesSelenium thyroid gland liver carcinogenesis
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