Impaired regulation of serum hepcidin during phlebotomy in patients with chronic hepatitis C

Authors

  • Ryosuke Sugimoto,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Naoki Fujita,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Naohisa Tomosugi,

    1. Division of Clinical Science, Medical Research Institute, Kanazawa Medical University, Kanzawa, Japan
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  • Nagisa Hara,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Hirohide Miyachi,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Hideaki Tanaka,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Masaki Takeo,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Naoki Nakagawa,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Motoh Iwasa,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Yoshinao Kobayashi,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Masahiko Kaito,

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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  • Yoshiyuki Takei

    1. Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, Mie, and
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Dr Naoki Fujita, Department of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Division of Clinical Medicine and Biomedical Science, Institute of Medical Sciences, Mie University Graduate School of Medicine, 2-174 Edobashi, Tsu, Mie 514-8507, Japan. Email: nfujita@clin.medic.mie-u.ac.jp

Abstract

Aim:  This study was conducted to determine the clinical relevance of hepcidin, a recently identified key iron regulatory hormone, in patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (C-HCV).

Methods:  Serum hepcidin levels were measured in 9 C-HCV patients by surface-enhanced laser desorption/ionization time of flight mass spectrometry (SELDI-TOF-MS), and compared to those of healthy controls. Sequential changes of hepcidin were also investigated during phlebotomy.

Results:  Serum hepcidin and ferritin were significantly higher in C-HCV than in controls (P = 0.0002), these two variables were strongly related to each other (r = 0.658; P < 0.01), and phlebotomy significantly decreased serum hepcidin in C-HCV (P = 0.0007); all these results recollect the hepcidin response to iron signal. Hepcidin/ferritin ratio, an index of the appropriateness of hepcidin expression relative to iron overload, was significantly lower in C-HCV than in controls (0.33 ± 0.41 vs. 0.73 ± 0.36, P = 0.0068). This relative impairment of hepcidin expression was not reversible after phlebotomy (P = NS).

Conclusions:  Although the hepcidin expression responds to iron conditions in C-HCV, this response is relatively limited. This relative impairment of hepcidin expression may be relevant to disease progression, and thus correction of its regulation may be beneficial for these iron-overloaded C-HCV patients.

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