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Biometals. 2006 Oct;19(5):547-53.

Iron and cadmium uptake by duodenum of hypotransferrinaemic mice.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Biochemistry, King's College London, London, UK.


Absorption from food is an important route for entry of the toxic metal, cadmium, into the body. Both cadmium and iron are believed to be taken up by duodenal enterocytes via the iron regulated, proton-coupled transporter, DMT1. This means that cadmium uptake could be enhanced in conditions where iron absorption is increased. We measured pH dependent uptake of (109)Cd and (59)Fe by duodenum from mice with an in vitro method. Mice with experimental (hypoxia, iron deficiency) or hereditary (hypotransferrinaemia) increased iron absorption were studied. All three groups of mice showed increased (59)Fe uptake (p<0.05) compared to their respective controls. Hypotransferrinaemic and iron deficient mice exhibited an increase in (109)Cd uptake (p<0.05). Cadmium uptake was not, however, increased by lowering the medium pH from 7.4 to 6. In contrast, (59)Fe uptake (from (59)FeNTA(2)) and ferric reductase activity was increased by lowering medium pH in control and iron deficient mice (p<0.05). The data show that duodenal cadmium uptake can be increased by hereditary iron overload conditions. The uptake is not, however, altered by lowering medium pH suggesting that DMT1-independent uptake pathways may operate.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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