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Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)

Published in Association with the European Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (EFLM)

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Hepcidin concentrations and iron homeostasis in preeclampsia

Gergely Toldi1, 2 / Balázs Stenczer2 / Attila Molvarec2 / Zoltán Takáts1 / Gabriella Bekő3 / János Rigó Jr2 / Barna Vásárhelyi4

1First Department of Pediatrics, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary

2First Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary

3Department of Central Laboratory, Semmelweis University, Budapest, Hungary

4Research Group of Pediatrics and Nephrology, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Budapest, Hungary

Corresponding author: Gergely Toldi, First Department of Pediatrics, Semmelweis University, Bókay u. 53–54, 1083 Budapest, Hungary Phone: +36-20-4367181, Fax: +36-1-3138212,

Citation Information: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. Volume 48, Issue 10, Pages 1423–1426, ISSN (Online) 1437-4331, ISSN (Print) 1434-6621, DOI: 10.1515/CCLM.2010.290, July 2010

Publication History

Published Online:


Background: Plasma iron is increased in preeclampsia (PE) when compared to healthy pregnant women. This is in contrast to inflammation characteristic for PE. The link between iron homeostasis and inflammation is hepcidin. Our goal was to describe hepcidin concentrations and its association with iron homeostasis in PE.

Methods: We obtained peripheral blood samples from 30 preeclamptic [gestational age: 36.5 (24–40) weeks] and 37 healthy pregnant women [gestational age: 36 (28–39) weeks] to determine plasma hepcidin and interleukin-6 (IL-6) concentrations, complete blood cell counts and parameters of iron homeostasis [plasma iron, transferrin and ferritin levels and total iron binding capacity (TIBC)]. Hepcidin was measured using mass spectrophotometry. The Mann-Whitney test was used for statistical analysis.

Results: Plasma hepcidin, IL-6, iron and ferritin concentrations were increased (p<0.05 for all), whereas plasma transferrin, TIBC and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentrations were lower (p<0.05 for all) in PE compared to healthy pregnant women. No differences were seen in the other parameters investigated.

Conclusions: Plasma iron concentrations are increased despite high hepcidin concentrations in PE. This might indicate a resistance to the iron-decreasing action of hepcidin.

Clin Chem Lab Med 2010;48:1423–6.

Keywords: hepcidin; interleukin-6; iron homeostasis; preeclampsia

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