I have read about mineral inefficiencies in humans such as iron insufficiency or zinc insufficiency and recently I learned on the use of bromine containing molecules (bromides) in different medical conditions and this brought me to wonder if a mineral insufficiency of bromide also occurs in humans and if it might cause some of the symptoms treated by the following substances:

  • Mucolytic (bromhexine)
  • antihistamine (brompheniramine maleate)
  • anticonvulsant (sodium bromide, potassium bromide) although used primarily for dogs
  • commonly used short term sleep regulators (brompheniramine Maleate, brotizolam)
  • rarely used long term sleep regulators (sodium bromide, potassium bromide)
  • From wikipedia: "According to one study, bromine (as bromide) is an essential cofactor in the peroxidasin catalysis of sulfilimine crosslinks in collagen IV. This post-translational modification occurs in all animals, and bromine is an essential trace element for humans."
  • if bromelain enzyme contains bromide (I didn't find clear information weather yes or no) - as a possible digestive aid.

Yet, I understand that exposure to too much bromide can cause a severe poisoning named bromism.

Is there a known condition of bromide insufficiency and if so, how does it treated without causing bromism?

  • I am not the downvoter, but this question is very unclear on what you are trying to ask. "Is there a bromide insufficiency..." in who? What makes you think there is? Nov 5 '19 at 13:57
  • @ChrisRogers, there is some evidence that bromine might be an essential nutrient in humans.
    – Jan
    Nov 5 '19 at 14:03
  • @Jan - So are we to assume this is a question of "Is there a bromide insufficiency in the general world population"? If so that needs to be clear, plus the question of why the OP thinks it's possible also needs to be addressed IMO. Nov 5 '19 at 14:07
  • @ChrisRogers, I'm about to answer that.
    – Jan
    Nov 5 '19 at 14:07
  • Hello to you too --- I tried to edit the question per comments; @Jan yes, I thought about adding this but I assumed direct quoting isn't good and that I don't have enough knowledge on this particular subject to write about it but given you checked the source and commented about it, I just copy pasted the passage to the question.
    – user8225
    Nov 5 '19 at 14:27

Recently, it has been considered that bromine might be an essential nutrient for humans. This article: Bromine is an essential trace element for assembly of collagen IV scaffolds in tissue development and architecture (Cell, 2014) says that:

  • Bromine is essential for collagen synthesis in the human body
  • Bromine deficiency resulting in a damage of intestinal lining has been observed in recipients of total parenteral nutrition (intravenous infusion of a mixture of nutrients, but lacking bromine).

Nowadays, when a nutrient deficiency is observed only in recipients of total parenteral nutrition, it usually means it is rare.

The drugs mentioned in the question are not intended to treat bromine deficiency. If such deficiency is discovered (by a blood test), it can be treated by bromine supplements by a doctor. Anyway, I strongly advise against using bromine supplements without a clear indication.

Bromelain is an enzyme found in pineapple and is used as a digestive aid; from its chemical formula on PubChem you can see that it does not contain bromine.

Origin of the word bromelain (Dictionary.com):

1890–95; apparently bromel(in) an earlier name for the enzyme (Bromel(ia) a genus that formerly included the pineapple (see bromeliad) + -in2) + (pap)ain

  • 1
    Hello Jan, regarding Bromelain in PubChem, please review a nice session I opened in Chemistry SE: chemistry.stackexchange.com/questions/124043/…
    – user8225
    Nov 21 '19 at 12:57
  • 1
    @JohnDoea, OK, I see that PubChem does not show the entire bromelain molecule. I serached for the origin of the word bromelain (see at the end of the answer) and you can see it's not about bromine.
    – Jan
    Nov 21 '19 at 13:06
  • Oh yes, that particular detail was clear to me. Of course the answer was helpful for me and I upvoted.
    – user8225
    Nov 21 '19 at 13:14

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