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Food Chem Toxicol. 2001 Jul;39(7):717-27.

The effect of the zeolite clinoptilolite on serum chemistry and hematopoiesis in mice.

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Rudjer Boskovic Institute, Division of Molecular Medicine, PO Box 180, HR-10002, Zagreb, Croatia.


Zeolites are natural or synthetic crystalline alumosilicates with ion exchanging properties. Supplied in fodder, they promote biomass production and animal health. Our aim was to assess the effects of the natural zeolite, clinoptilolite, on hematopoiesis, serum electrolytes and essential biochemical indicators of kidney and liver function in mice. Two preparations differing in particle size were tested: a powderized form obtained by countercurrent mechanical treatment of the clinoptilolite (MTCp) and normally ground clinoptilolite (NGCp). Young adult mice were supplied with food containing 12.5, 25 or 50% clinoptilolite powder. Control animals received the same food ration without the clinoptilolite. After 10, 20, 30 and 40 days, six animals from each group were exsanguinated to obtain blood for hematological and serum for biochemical measurements as well as to collect femoral bone marrow for determination of hematopoietic activity. Clinoptilolite ingestion was well tolerated, as judged by comparable body masses of treated and control animals. A 20% increase of the potassium level was detected in mice receiving the zeolite-rich diet, without other changes in serum chemistry. Erythrocyte, hemoglobin and platelet levels in peripheral blood were not materially affected. NGCp caused leukocytosis, with concomitant decline of the GM-CFU content in the bone marrow, which was attributed to intestinal irritation by rough zeolite particles. The mechanically treated clinoptilolite preparation caused similar, albeit less pronounced, changes. In a limited experiment, mice having transplanted mammary carcinoma in the terminal stage showed increased potassium and decreased sodium and chloride levels, severe anemia and leukocytosis, decreased bone marrow cellularity and diminished content of hematopoietic progenitor cells in the marrow. The clinoptilolite preparations ameliorated the sodium and chloride decline, whereas the effects on hematopoiesis were erratic.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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