Section 32
Chapter 31,672

Hepatic injury in chronic iron overload. Role of lipid peroxidation

Bacon, B.R.; Britton, R.S.

Chemico-Biological Interactions 70(3-4): 183-226


ISSN/ISBN: 0009-2797
PMID: 2663196
DOI: 10.1016/0009-2797(89)90045-8
Accession: 031671564

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In both hereditary hemochromatosis and in the various forms of secondary hemochromatosis, there is a pathologic expansion of body iron stores due mainly to an increase in absorption of dietary iron. Excess deposition of iron in the parenchymal tissues of several organs (e.g. liver, heart, pancreas, joints, endocrine glands) results in cell injury and functional insufficiency. In the liver, the major pathological manifestations of chronic iron overload are fibrosis and ultimately cirrhosis. Evidence for hepatotoxicity due to iron has been provided by several clinical studies, however the specific pathophysiologic mechanisms for hepatocellular injury and hepatic fibrosis in chronic iron overload are poorly understood. The postulated mechanisms of liver injury in chronic iron overload include (a) increased lysosomal membrane fragility, perhaps mediated by iron-induced lipid peroxidation, (b) peroxidative damage to mitochondria and microsomes resulting in organelle dysfunction, (c) a direct effect of iron on collagen biosynthesis and (d) a combination of all of the above.

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