Title:Comparison of soluble and placental transferrin receptors as standards for the determination of soluble transferrin receptor in humans.
Authors:Kogan AE; Filatov VL; Kara AN; Levina AA; Katrukha AG
Publication:Int J Lab Hematol. 2007 Oct;29(5):335-40. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2257.2006.00874.x.
Transferrin receptor is a transmembrane protein that mediates iron transport from blood into cells. The extracellular part of this receptor circulates in blood as soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR) and the immunological determination of this parameter is widely used in clinical practice. This study aimed at comparing the properties of sTfR and placental TfR (pTfR) and to evaluate the validity of pTfR as a standard for the determination of sTfR in human serum. sTfR and pTfR were studied by immunofluorescent assay and fast protein liquid chromatography (FPLC) gel filtration. Serum sTfR levels were calculated using sTfR or pTfR as a standard. The immunological activity of pTfR was lower than that of sTfR in all anti-TfR monoclonal antibody pairs. Upon FPLC gel filtration, pTfR eluted in a void volume of the column as a protein with a molecular weight (MW) of >1500 kDa, whereas the MW of sTfR corresponded to 237 kDa. This could be a result of micelle formation by pTfR because of its hydrophobic intracellular part. The serum sTfR levels calculated against sTfR were 2.5 times lower than those calculated against pTfR. Serum sTfR levels are overestimated when pTfR is used as the standard.