Dietary iron supplements and Moringa oleifera leaves influence the liver hepcidin messenger RNA expression and biochemical indices of iron status in rats.Nutr Res. 2014 Jul; 34(7):630-8.NR
In this study, the effects of iron depletion and repletion on biochemical and molecular indices of iron status were investigated in growing male Wistar rats. We hypothesized that iron from Moringa leaves could overcome the effects of iron deficiency and modulate the expression of iron-responsive genes better than conventional iron supplements. Iron deficiency was induced by feeding rats an iron-deficient diet for 10 weeks, whereas control rats were maintained on an iron-sufficient diet (35.0-mg Fe/kg diet). After the depletion period, animals were repleted with different source of iron, in combination with ascorbic acid. Iron deficiency caused a significant (P < .05) decrease in serum iron and ferritin levels by 57% and 40%, respectively, as compared with nondepleted control animals. Significant changes in the expression (0.5- to100-fold) of liver hepcidin (HAMP), transferrin, transferrin receptor-2, hemochromatosis type 2, ferroportin 1, ceruloplasmin, and ferritin-H were recorded in iron-depleted and iron-repleted rats, as compared with nondepleted rats (P < .05). Dietary iron from Moringa leaf was found to be superior compared with ferric citrate in overcoming the effects of iron deficiency in rats. These results suggest that changes in the relative expression of liver hepcidin messenger RNA can be used as a sensitive molecular marker for iron deficiency.