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Lab Invest. 2007 Jul;87(7):713-25. Epub 2007 Apr 9.

Changes of gene expression of iron regulatory proteins during turpentine oil-induced acute-phase response in the rat.

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Division of Gastroenterology and Endocrinology, Department of Internal Medicine, Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany.


In the present study, turpentine oil was injected in the hind limb muscle of the rat to stimulate an acute-phase response (APR). The changes in the gene expression of cytokines and proteins known to be involved in the iron regulatory pathway were then studied in the liver and in extra-hepatic tissue. In addition to the strong upregulation of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and IL-1 beta observed in the inflamed muscle, an upregulation of the genes for IL1-beta and tumor necrosis factor-alpha, but not IL-6, were detectable in the liver. Hepatic Hepc gene expression increased to a maximum at 6 h after the onset of APR. An upregulation of transferrin, transferrin receptor 1 (TfR1), TfR2, ferritin-H, iron responsive element binding protein-1 (IRP1), IRP2 and divalent metal transporter gene expression was also found. Hemojuvelin (Hjv)-, ferroportin 1-, Dcytb-, hemochromatosis-gene- and hephaestin gene expression was downregulated. Hepcidin (Hepc) gene expression was not only detectable in extra-hepatic tissues such as heart, small intestine, colon, spleen and kidney but it was also upregulated under acute-phase conditions, with the Hjv gene being regulated antagonistically. Fpn-1 gene expression was downregulated significantly in heart, colon and spleen. Most of the genes of the known proteins involved in iron metabolism are expressed not only in the liver but also in extra-hepatic tissues. Under acute-phase conditions, acute-phase cytokines (eg IL-6) may modulate the gene expression of such proteins not only in the liver but also in other organs.

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