Iron supplementation in iron replete, but not iron deficient children has been shown to increase malaria associated morbidity. Iron chelators, while cytostatic for bacterial and mammalian cells, actually kill malaria parasites, despite the availability of millimolar heme iron in the infected erythrocyte. Iron repletion has not been fully evaluated in murine malaria models. The broad long term objective is to rapidly evaluate the type of iron supplementation and timing of malaria infection during iron repletion on malaria morbidity in mice with implications for human nutritional iron supplementation. We hypothesize that parasite bioavailable iron excess influences the hepatic stage significantly more than erythrocytic stage of malaria. The type of iron supplementation or timing of malaria infection during iron replenishment will alter malaria outcome possibly dependent on an iron effect on immune function rather than the erythrocyte iron level.
The specific aims are 1) to compare the type of iron supplementation and timing of malaria infection in iron deficient and iron replete mice on both hepatic and erythrocytic stage malaria;2) to evaluate the influence of iron supplementation and timing of malaria infection in genotypic iron defective mice for hepcidin or also erythroid, not hepatic, iron uptake and 3) to correlate malaria outcomes with hematologic biomarkers like hepcidin, erythrocyte ferritin and murine zinc protoporphyrin IX or immunologic biomarkers like interferon-gamma. The techniques to be utilized include mouse malaria testing, iron profiling and biomarker assays. These studies will be able to distinguish erythrocyte iron status from host immune response in malaria outcome with iron supplementation. The significant impact is to rapidly evaluate the method and type of iron therapy on malaria morbidity in mice with implications for human nutritional iron supplementation for children at risk of malaria.
This research will investigate the influence of iron supplementation in a mouse malaria model. The type of iron supplementation and timing of malaria infection during iron repletion on liver stage and blood cell stage malaria outcomes will be evaluated in iron deficient, iron replete and iron defective mice. Hematologic and immunologic biomarkers associated with outcome will be correlated
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