Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research (ISSN : 0975-7384)

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Original Articles: 2014 Vol: 6 Issue: 5

Psychological stress leads to hepatic iron accumulation and disturbs iron homeostasis


The importance of psychological stress is found in the etiology and pathology of more and more diseases. It has been reported that hepcidin is up-regulated by psychological stress, however, TFR2 is a direct regulatory role of the gene on hepcidin expression. Our aim was to evaluate the regulation of TFR2 and the series of molecular mechanisms corresponding to psychological stress. We used a communication box paradigm to induce psychological stress and found that hepatic iron increased as haemosiderin, ferritin and non–transferrin-bound iron induced by quantitative iron analysis and Perl’s staining after 7 d. Psychological stress down-regulated serum transferrin saturation and up-regulated hepatic transferrin receptor 2 after 3 d, then down-regulated hepatic transferrin receptor 1 and up-regulated hepatic ferritin mRNA/protein expression after 7 d. Simultaneously, the levels of hepatic non–transferrin-bound iron, malondialdehyde and superoxide dismutase activity all increased after 7 d. The present study suggested that TFR2 should be another regulator of hepcidin and contribute to hepatic iron accumulation.