Letter | Published:

Abnormal development of preimplantation rat eggs after three days of maternal dietary zinc deficiency


DIETARY deficiency of zinc in pregnant rats causes congenital malformations of high incidence in multiple organ systems1,2. These teratogenic effects of zinc deficiency seem to be related to impairment of nucleic acid synthesis3–6. We now report that dietary zinc deficiency in the first few days of pregnancy results in abnormal cleavage and blastulation in preimplantation eggs, as early as day 3 of gestation in the rat.

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