Association of Plasma Total Cysteine and Anthropometric Status in 6–30 Months Old Indian Children
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionNutrients 2020, 12(10), 3146 https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12103146
High-quality protein has been associated with child growth; however, the role of the amino acid cysteine remains unclear. The aim was to measure the extent to which plasma total cysteine (tCys) concentration is associated with anthropometric status in children aged 6–30 months living in New Delhi, India. The study was a prospective cohort study including 2102 children. We calculated Z-scores for height-for-age (HAZ), weight-for-height (WHZ), or weight-for-age (WAZ) according to the WHO Child Growth Standards. We used multiple regression models to estimate the association between tCys and the anthropometric indices. A high proportion of the children were categorized as malnourished at enrolment; 41% were stunted (HAZ ≤ −2), 19% were wasted (WHZ ≤ −2) and 42% underweight (WAZ ≤ −2). Plasma total cysteine (tCys) was significantly associated with HAZ, WHZ and WAZ after adjusting for relevant confounders (p < 0.001). Low tCys (≤25th percentile) was associated with a decrease of 0.28 Z-scores for HAZ, 0.10 Z-scores for WHZ, and 0.21 Z-scores for WAZ compared to being >25th percentile. In young Indian children from low-to-middle socioeconomic neighborhoods, a low plasma total cysteine concentration was associated with an increased risk of poor anthropometric status.