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Regulatory Mechanisms Controlling the Intestinal Absorption of Iron: Absorption of Cobalt in Patients with Normal Iron Repletion, Iron Deficiency, and Iron Overload.

L. S. Valberg, M.D.; and D. Olatunbosun, M.D.
Ann Intern Med. 1968;68(5):1172-1173. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-68-5-1172_3
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To investigate the poorly understood intracellular mechanisms involved in intestinal iron transport a study was made of the absorption of cobalt, which has a closely related electron structure. Absorption was measured by a fecal excretion technique using 59Fe and 57Co tracers. In 12 subjects in a state of normal iron repletion the average absorption of 20 µmoles of iron and cobalt administered with 200 µmoles of ascorbic acid was similar, 44 and 49%, respectively. The addition of 80 µmoles of carrier iron to the test dose produced a significant reduction in cobalt absorption, and carrier cobalt had a similar effect


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