Ann Hematol 2018 Jun 5;97(6):1071-1080. Epub 2018 Feb 5.
Nutrition and Public Health Unit, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Research Group in Nutrition and Mental Health (NUTRISAM), Institut d'Investigació Sanitària Pere Virgili (IISPV), Universitat Rovira i Virgili, C/ Sant Llorenç 21, 43201, Reus, Spain.
The aims of this study were to describe hepcidin levels and to assess their associations with iron status and the main variants in the HFE gene in healthy and full-term newborns during the first year of life, as a longitudinal study conducted on 140 infants. Anthropometric and biochemical parameters, hepcidin, hemoglobin (Hb), serum ferritin (SF), transferrin saturation (TS), mean corpuscular volume (MCV), and C-reactive protein (CRP), were assessed in 6- and 12-month-olds. Infants were genotyped for the three main HFE variants: C282Y, H63D, and S65C. Hepcidin levels increased from 6 to 12 months of age (43.7 ± 1.5 to 52.0 ± 1.5 ng/mL; p < 0.001), showing higher levels in infants with better iron status compared to those with iron deficiency (ID) (44.8 ± 1.5 vs 37.9 ± 1.3 ng/mL, p < 0.018, and 54.3 ± 1.5 vs 44.0 ± 1.4 ng/mL, p < 0.038, in 6- and 12-month-olds, respectively). In multivariate linear regression models, iron status was found to be associated with hepcidin levels in infants with wild-type HFE gene (p = 0.046 and p = 0.048 in 6- and 12-month-olds, respectively). However, this association was not found in HFE-alteration-carrying infants. Hepcidin levels increased in healthy infants during the first year of life and were positively associated with iron levels only in infants with wild-type HFE gene, a situation that requires further investigation.