Hepcidin is correlated to soluble hemojuvelin but not to increased GDF15 during pregnancy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


  • A Finkenstedt
  • A Widschwendter
  • CG Brasse-Lagnel
  • I Theurl
  • M Hubalek
  • H Dieplinger
  • W Vogel
  • H Zoller

Colleges, School and Institutes


Increased maternal and foetal iron requirements during pregnancy are compensated by an increase of intestinal iron absorption. Animal studies have shown that the expression of the main iron regulator hepcidin is significantly suppressed during pregnancy, but the factors associated with hepcidin suppression remain unknown. To investigate possible suppressors of hepcidin expression during pregnancy we determined serum concentrations of growth-differentiation factor-15 (GDF15), erythropoietin (EPO), soluble hemojuvelin (HJV) and hepcidin in 42 pregnant women at different time points of gestation and correlated them with serum iron and haematological parameters. Serum iron parameters and serum hepcidin concentration significantly decreased during pregnancy, whereas serum concentrations of GDF15, EPO and soluble HJV significantly increased. A negative correlation of hepcidin with EPO and soluble HJV but no correlation between hepcidin and GDF15 was found. Hepcidin and ferritin were positively correlated throughout the pregnancy. Our findings suggest that hepcidin expression is controlled by body iron stores where soluble HJV and EPO may act as suppressors of hepcidin. (C) 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-237
Number of pages5
JournalBlood Cells, Molecules & Diseases
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2012


  • Erythroid regulator, Iron homeostasis, Erythropoietin, Eclampsia, Gestation