A new method to measure iron absorption from the enrichment of 57Fe and 58Fe in young erythroid cells.

E.G.H.M. van den Heuvel, Th. Muys, H. Pellegrom, J.P. Bruyntjes, W. Dokkum, S. Spanhaak, G. Schaafsma

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TNO Nutrition and Food Research Institute, AJ Zeist, The Netherlands.

Iron absorption can be measured by the incorporation of stable iron isotopes into erythrocytes, 14 days after isotope administration. The disadvantage of this method is the high dose of isotopes needed to obtain a sufficient enrichment. Therefore, in this study cell fractions rich in young erythroid cells were prepared by using a density separation method. From 10 women blood was taken 4, 5, and 7 days after oral and intravenous administration of 57Fe and 58Fe. In these cell fractions and in whole blood taken 14 days after isotope administration, isotope enrichment was measured and absorption calculated. Absorption calculated from the isotope enrichment in the reticulocyte-rich cell fractions (12.2 +/- SEM 3.7%) was not significantly different from absorption based on whole-blood values (13.0 +/- 3.3%). Because a threefold higher isotope enrichment was found in the cell fractions, the required dose of stable isotopes can be reduced to one-third of the dose used in the traditional method without loss of sensitivity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)649-654
Number of pages6
JournalClinical Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1998

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