Victor Herbert, MD, JD
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Herbert V.; Hereditary Hemochromatosis. Ann Intern Med. 2001;135:1091. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-135-12-200112180-00019
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 2001;135(12):1091.
TO THE EDITOR:
Beutler and associates (1) again raise the question of whether the better predictor of phenotypic expression of hemochromatosis is the genotype or transferrin saturation. Perhaps a more important question is whether the better predictor is the genotype or ferritin saturation measured by quantitating atoms of iron per molecule of ferritin (2, 3). Ferritin, a circulating iron-storage protein, is in equilibrium with body iron stores. The shell of the ferritin protein molecule can store up to 4500 atoms of iron on its inner surface, unlike the transferrin molecule, a circulating iron-delivery protein, which can bind only 2 atoms of iron, one on each of its extended arms (3).
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