, Volume 169, Issue 8, pp 951-956
Date: 19 Feb 2010

Leukocyte DNA damage in children with iron deficiency anemia: effect of iron supplementation

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Iron deficiency is frequently associated with anemia. Iron is a transition-metal ion, and it can induce free radical formation, which leads to formation of various lesions in DNA, proteins, and lipids. The aim of this study was to investigate baseline oxidative DNA damage and to clarify the role of the administration of a therapeutic dose of iron on DNA oxidation in children with iron deficiency anemia (IDA). Twenty-seven children with IDA and 20 healthy children were enrolled in the study. Leukocyte DNA damage (strand breaks and Fpg-sensitive sites) was assessed using comet assay before and after 12 weeks of daily iron administration. Before the iron administration, the frequency of DNA strand breaks in the children with IDA was found to be lower than those in the control group (P < 0.05), but there was not a significant difference for frequency of Fpg-sensitive sites. After 12 weeks of iron administration, the frequency of both DNA strand breaks and Fpg-sensitive sites were found to be increased (P < 0.01). No significant association was determined between DNA damage parameters and hemoglobin, hematocrit, serum iron, total iron binding capacity, and ferritin. In conclusion, basal level of DNA strand breaks is at a low level in children with IDA. After iron administration, DNA strand breaks and Fpg-sensitive sites, which represent oxidatively damaged DNA, increased. However, this increase was unrelated to serum level of iron and ferritin.