To explore the mechanism by which zinc acts on cutaneous inflammatory lesions, we studied granulocyte zinc levels and in vitro polymorphonuclear leukocyte chemotaxis in 20 acne patients before and after 2 months of zinc therapy (200 mg/day zinc gluconate). The zinc level was assayed by flame absorption spectrophotometry and chemotaxis was performed by agarose assay. After 2 months of treatment, a significant decrease in granulocyte zinc level associated with inhibition of chemotaxis (r = 0.69) was observed in 16 patients. This suggests that zinc anti-inflammatory action is related to inhibition of polymorphonuclear leukocyte chemotaxis induced by a decreased granulocyte zinc level.
Dreno B, Trossaert M, Boiteau HL, Litoux P