IMR Press / FBL / Volume 26 / Issue 9 / DOI: 10.52586/4958
Open Access Original Research
Impact of intravenous iron on cardiac and skeletal oxidative stress and cardiac mitochondrial function in experimental uraemia chronic kidney disease
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1 Academic Renal Research Department, Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust and Hull York Medical School, HU3 2JZ Kingston upon Hull, UK
*Correspondence: (Sunil Bhandari)
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2021, 26(9), 442–464;
Submitted: 25 May 2021 | Revised: 17 July 2021 | Accepted: 20 July 2021 | Published: 30 September 2021
Copyright: © 2021 The Author(s). Published by BRI.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license (

Introuction: Uraemia leads to changes in cardiac structure, metabolic remodeling and anaemia, key factors in the development of heart failure in patients with chronic kidney disease. Previous studies have identified abnormalities in mitochondrial function, potentially impairing energy provision and enhancing oxidative stress. This study characterised oxidant status and changes in mitochondrial function in uraemia and the impact of correcting anaemia via intravenous iron therapy. Methods: Experimental uraemia was induced in male Sprague-Dawley rats via a subtotal nephrectomy and parenteral iron administration given 6 weeks post-surgery. Oxidative stress from tissue samples was evaluated by measuring pro-oxidant activities and anti-oxidant capacities in both sham and uraemic animals with and without iron supplementation. Thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS), aconitase activity and cardiolipin were measured. Mitochondrial function was assessed using the Seahorse XFp analyser on isolated mitochondria excised from cardiac tissue. Results: Oxidative stress in this uraemic model was increased in cardiac tissue (increased GSSG/GSH ratio, TBARS and increased activities of pro-oxidant enzymes). There was no impact on skeletal tissue. Parenteral iron ameliorated oxidative stress by enhancing the anti-oxidant defense system in cardiac tissue and skeletal tissue. Examination of respiratory reserve in cardiac mitochondria demonstrated that parenteral iron restored mitochondrial function. This experimental model of uraemia demonstrated a specific oxidative stress on the heart muscle without significant changes in skeletal oxidant status. Iron therapy improved anti-oxidant defence system, consequently reducing oxidative stress in the heart and skeletal tissue. There was an improvement in cardiac mitochondrial function. Conclusions: This experimental evidence indicates that iron therapy could reduce vulnerability to oxidative stress and potentially improve both cardiac and skeletal functional capacity from improvements in mitochondrial function.

Chronic kidney disease
Oxidative stress
Fig. 1.
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