The Impact of Iron Overload in Acute Leukemia: Chronic Inflammation, But Not the Presence of Nontransferrin Bound Iron is a Determinant of Oxidative Stress

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Abstract

In the literature, studies on the oxidant effects of nontransferrin bound iron [NTBI (eLPI assay)] during chemotherapy of acute lymphoblastic leukemia and acute myeloblastic leukemia are lacking. We established NTBI and oxidative stress determinants (OSD), iron parameters, high-sensitive C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) levels, liver tests, cumulative chemotherapeutic doses, and transfused blood in 36 children with acute leukemia throughout chemotherapy. These parameters were determined at the beginning and end of chemotherapy blocks (11 time points) and in 20 healthy children using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and colorimetric and fluorometric enzymatic methods. In acute lymphoblastic leukemia, NTBI, OSD, and hs-CRP were higher than controls at 4/11, 7/11, and 9/11 time points (P<0.05). At 3 time points, NTBI and OSD concurrently increased. Ferritin, soluble transferrin receptor, serum iron, and transferrin saturation were higher than in controls at 5 to 11/11 time points (P<0.05). Those with NTBI had higher iron parameters than those without NTBI (P<0.05), but showed similar OSD, hs-CRP, liver enzymes, cumulative chemotherapeutics, and transfused blood (P>0.05). OSD did not correlate with NTBI, but correlated with hs-CRP. In conclusion, NTBI is a poor predictor of OSD in acute leukemia possibly because of the heterogeneity of NTBI and chronic inflammation. Further studies are needed to delineate the pathophysiology of these diseases.

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