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Effect of sulphydryl inhibition on the uptake of transferrin-bound iron by reticulocytes
  1. J. Fielding,
  2. Shirley A. Edwards,
  3. Richard Ryall
  1. Haematology Department, St Mary's Hospital, Harrow Road, London


    Iron transferrin, the highly stable carrier of plasma iron, may be dissociated, under physiological conditions, by sodium thioglycollate, a reaction which involves the formation of iron thioglycollate complexes. This suggested that sulphydryl radicals, which are the active groups in thioglycollate and related compounds, may play a part in the uptake of iron by immature red cells from iron transferrin. If this were so, it could be predicted that the sulphydryl inhibitor, p-hydroxymercuribenzoate, would depress the uptake of iron by reticulocytes. It is demonstrated here that inhibition of uptake of transferrin-bound iron by reticulocytes, which have been exposed to micromolar concentration of p-hydroxymercuribenzoate, is virtually complete. It is suggested that sulphydryl-containing compounds are intimately involved in the process of iron uptake by immature red cells.

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