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Iron usage in neurodegenerative diseases

Iron usage in neurodegenerative diseases: Iron is required for proper brain development, neurone formation and cognitive functions and its deficiency accounts for  most common nutrient deficiency worldwide. People suffering either from the prenatal or postnatal deficiency of iron have a persistent lack in neurodevelopment including abnormality in learning and memory. Normal ageing is accompanied by progressive iron accumulation in the brain and is most evident within midbrain regions and have been associated with neurodegenerative disorders.

Several studies have shown that iron is implicated in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson′s, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Huntington′s, Alzheimer′s, and prion diseases. Intracellular iron has been recently implicated in the death of cells and known as ferroptosis. This pathway is a regulated cell death pathway, which is different from necrosis, apoptosis, and autophagy. Ferroptosis is induced by the protein such as erastin, sulfalazine, and RSL3 and can be prevented by antioxidants, such as the 6-hydroxy-2,5,7,8-tetramethylchroman-2-carboxylic acid (Trolox) and vitamin E, and by iron chelators. Thus if you are suffering from iron associated disease especially associated with accumulation, talk to your doctor about vitamin E, Trolox or iron chelators. Ferroptosis is believe to be as a result of reactive oxygen species and lipid peroxidation  which induce cell death. Thus, inhibition of the ferroptosis is a possible mechanism by which iron chelation therapies may prevent neuronal cell death.

Iron usage in neurodegenerative diseases
Iron usage in neurodegenerative diseases: Iron is required for proper brain development, neurone formation and cognitive functions . Adapted from Koury et al., 2015.

In another issue, we shall be discussing  neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer′s disease and Parkinson′s disease.

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