Trace elements in saliva and plasma of patients with type 2 diabetes: Association to metabolic control and complications

Published:October 08, 2019DOI:



      An analysis is made of the saliva and plasma levels of trace elements in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus and their association to metabolic control and the presence of chronic complications.


      A cross-sectional observational clinical study was carried out in 74 patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) was used to determine the following trace elements in plasma and unstimulated basal saliva: 13Al, 16S, 4Be, 5B, 20Ca, 27Co, 29Cu, 24Cr, 38Sr, 15P, 3Li, 12Mg, 25Mn, 28Ni, 82Pb, 37Rb, 22Ti, 23V and 30Zn.


      The levels of cobalt (p = 0.048) in saliva and of strontium (p = 0.001) in plasma were related to the presence of chronic complications. Significant differences with respect to metabolic control were observed for beryllium (p = 0.038), boron (p = 0.023) and phosphorus in saliva (p = 0.046), and for rubidium (p = 0.005), titanium (p = 0.016) and zinc in plasma (p = 0.013). A significant correlation (p < 0.001) was found between boron in plasma and boron in unstimulated basal saliva.


      The determination of trace elements in plasma and saliva constitutes a complementary tool for the assessment of metabolic control and for predicting chronic complications associated to type 2 diabetes mellitus. Further studies involving the biomonitoring of trace elements in saliva and plasma are needed.


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