There are several different forms of zinc but the two that are most commonly recommended are zinc picolinate and Optizinc.  Optizinc is the form that is used in Nutrivene, a Down syndrome specific multivitamin.

Personally we have used Optizinc in the past with our daughter but recently switched to zinc picolinate as her zinc levels have remained low.  Zinc supplementation is not recommended unless under the care of a medical practitioner as careful blood testing must be done to ensure dosing is neccessary. 

The Role of Zinc in Down’s Syndrome


Click here, or on the title to access the original paper. 


The aim of this paper was to determine whether DS people suffer zinc deficiency, what symptoms they exhibit which could be the result of zinc deficiency, whether zinc supplementation improves any of these symptoms, and what factors could cause zinc deficiency in DS. The conclusions have been drawn from a critical review of all the research papers available on the subject of DS and zinc.

It appears that the majority of DS individuals are zinc deficient, and that they exhibit symptoms classically associated with zinc deficiency:

• Thyroid dysfunction
• Immunodeficiency
• Retarded growth
• Faulty DNA repair


Supplementation will raise DS zinc status to normal. Correction of zinc deficiency seems to:

• Improve thyroid function, though it is not clear yet what parameters are being affected
• Raise active thymulin levels and concomitantly lower inactive thymulin
• Possibly increase lymphocyte proliferation
• Possibly restore delayed hypersensitivity
• Improve neutrophil function
• Possibly normalise lymphocyte subset distribution
• Possibly minimise growth retardation
• Regulate DNA repair
• Regulate myeloid cell differentiation and apoptosis


There several possible reasons behind DS zinc deficiency, which are most likely to be
working in some combination:


• Over-expression of genes
• Malabsorption
• Dysfunction of transport proteins



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