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Table 1 Zinc and Immune Cell Functions

From: Zinc in innate and adaptive tumor immunity

Cell Type Comment References
Macrophages MT-knockout results in defects in phagocytosis and antigen presentation [73]
Dendritic cells Zinc induces maturation and increases surface MHCII [70]
NK cells Zinc increases cytotoxicity and restores IFN-γ production [50, 52, 61]
NKT cells Zinc release from MTs in limited during chronic stress. Stress and inflammation induce MT gene expression, further sequestering zinc [31, 66, 67]
iNKT cells Cells lacking PLZF lack innate cytotoxicity and do not secrete IL-4 and IFN-γ [68]
CD4 thymocytes Zinc deficiency elevates glucocorticoid levels, causing apoptosis and reduced numbers of thymocytes [52, 57]
CD4 helper T cells Zinc deficiency shifts Th1 to Th2 response via altered cytokine release [10, 48, 56, 176]
CD8 thymocytes Zinc deficiency results in reduced numbers of thymocytes due glucocorticoid-induced apoptosis [48, 52]
T cells Zinc deficiency results in decreased function due reduced biologically active thymulin [5355]
T reg ?  
Mast cells Required for IL-6 and TNF-α production [71, 72]