Serum hepcidin and interleukin-6 as biochemical markers in differentiation of iron deficiency anemia and anemia of chronic disease

Sonal Vyas, Sanjeev Suman, Anil Kapoor, S. K. Nema


Background: Iron deficiency (ID) is the most prevalent nutritional deficiency and the most common cause of anemia in the world. It is defined as a reduction in total body iron to an extent that iron stores are fully exhausted and even some degree of tissue iron deficiency results. The Present study aims to compare the serum hepcidin and IL-6 levels in anemia of chronic disease (ACD) and iron deficiency anemia (IDA) groups and correlate the values of serum hepcidin levels with their serum ferritin levels and IL-6 levels.

Methods: A total of 112 individuals were enrolled in the study. Samples for hematological evaluations were collected and estimation was carried out for biomarker using ELISA method(s) using specified kit(s) procured commercially. The statistical evaluation was done using SPSS version 24.0. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) and Pearson's correlation tests were used to compare the variables and to see the correlation between the different variables.

Results: In present study, we compared the values of RBC count, Hb gm/dl, MCV, MCH, MCHC in ACD and IDA group. Serum Hepcidin, a marker of iron deficiency anemia was significantly low in case of IDA 33.23±12.46ng/mL, on the contrary in case of ACD group the serum hepcidin level was elevated 98.36±24.29ng/mL. It is found that IL- 6 plays an important role in the regulation of hepcidin as reflected especially in ACD and IDA groups. In case of IDA the level of IL6 was significantly reduced to an average concentration 7.62±3.51ng/mL on the contrary in case of ACD group the serum IL-6 level was elevated to 115.82±33.7ng/mL. Thus, it provides for conclusive differentiation or diagnosis of iron deficiency anemia and anemia of chronic disease.

Conclusions: Serum Hepcidin can be used as a simple and cost effective diagnostic marker for differentiation of iron deficiency anemia and anemia of chronic disease.


Anemia of chronic disease (ACD), IL-6, Iron deficiency anemia (IDA), Serum hepcidin, Serum ferritin

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