Serum transferrin receptor levels in beta-thalassemia trait

Demir A., Yarali N., Fisgin T., Duru F., Kara A.

Journal of Tropical Pediatrics, vol.50, no.6, pp.369-371, 2004 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 50 Issue: 6
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Doi Number: 10.1093/tropej/50.6.369
  • Journal Name: Journal of Tropical Pediatrics
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.369-371
  • Ondokuz Mayıs University Affiliated: Yes


Increased levels of transferrin receptors (TfR) and soluble TfR (sTfR) are reliable indicators of iron deficiency anemia and conditions with enhanced erythropoietic activity. In this study we measured sTfR levels in the cases of beta-thalassemia trait (βTr) and IDA to see whether it would be a diagnostic tool for the differentiation of βTT and IDA. On the other hand STfR levels could give an idea about erythropoietic activity in βTT. Serum transferrin receptor (sTfR) levels were measured with enzyme immune assay in 37 cases with βTT, in 26 patients with iron deficiency anemia (IDA), in 17 patients with the coexistence of βTT with IDA, and in 21 healthy controls. Mean sTfR in βTT (6.54 ± 1.88) were statistically higher than in controls (5.09 ± 0.76) and lower than in IDA (11.46 ± 5.03 and in IDA coeidstence with βTT (14.44 ± 5.3, p < 0.05 in each comparison). However, in 17 cases with ΒTTr sTfR levels showed an overlap between the patients with IDA, and in 15 cases with βTT it also showed an overlap with controls. The finding of higher sTfR levels in βTT compared with controls suggested that there was a degree of ineffective hematopoiesis in βTT. Although sTfR levels in IDA were higher than in βTT, because of largely overlapping values in both groups, it was not satisfactory to distinguish βTT from IDA.