Zinc is a chemical element with the symbol Zn and atomic number 30. Zinc is a slightly brittle metal at room temperature and has a shiny-greyish appearance when oxidation is removed. It is the first element in group 12 (IIB) of the periodic table. In some respects, zinc is chemically similar to magnesium: both elements exhibit only one normal oxidation state (+2), and the Zn2+ and Mg2+ ions are of similar size.
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Zinc is a bluish-white, lustrous, diamagnetic metal, though most common commercial grades of the metal have a dull finish It is somewhat less dense than iron and has a hexagonal crystal structure, with a distorted form of hexagonal close packing, in which each atom has six nearest neighbors (at 265.9 pm) in its own plane and six others at a greater distance of 290.6 pm.
Zinc is an essential trace element for humans,animals, plantsand for microorganisms and is necessary for prenatal and postnatal development.It is the second most abundant trace metal in humans after iron and it is the only metal which appears in all enzyme classes.
Zinc is also an essential nutrient element for coral growth as it is an important cofactor for many enzymes.Zinc deficiency affects about two billion people in the developing world and is associated with many diseases.In children, deficiency causes growth retardation, delayed se&ual maturation, infection susceptibility, and diarrhea.Although zinc is an essential requirement for good health, excess zinc can be harmful./source