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Lancet. 1980 Aug 2;2(8188):236-7.

Oral absorption of lead and iron.


Oral lead and iron absorptions have been measured by the use of radioactive tracer techniques in ten subjects, five of whom had low iron stores as shown by low serum ferritin. The absorption of both elements was abnormally high in these five and also in one subject with normal serum ferritin. The other 4 subjects, who were iron-replete, had absorption values in the normal range. The statistically significant positive correlation between oral lead and iron absorptions suggests that the sizeable proportion of the population "overabsorbing" iron may absorb two to three times more lead than the generally accepted value of 10% of dietary input.

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