The physiological functions of zinc in humans include cell growth/proliferation, sexual maturation/reproduction, dark adaptation/night vision, gustatory acuity, wound healing, and host immune defenses. The actions of zinc with metalloenzymes, as a component of cysteine residues, in organelle membranes and polyribosomes are particularly important.

Wound healing response to zinc supplementation may begin as early as 24 h. As a result of zinc deficiency, growth is affected adversely in many animal species and in man. Inasmuch as zinc is needed for protein and DNA synthesis and cell division, it is believed that the growth effect of zinc is related to its effect on protein synthesis.92

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