Inadequate iron availability limits the response to erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESA) and hepcidin is a key regulator of iron metabolism. However, there is little information concerning time-dependent changes in hepcidin in response to the change of accelerated iron demand due to ESA-induced erythropoiesis. In this study, iron-related parameters, including hepcidin levels, were explored in comparison to patients receiving continuous erythropoietin receptor activator (CERA) and epoetin beta (EPO) treatment. Ninety-four patients were randomized to receive monthly CERA (N = 47) or EPO three times/week (N = 47). After the titration period, hemoglobin levels and iron-related parameters were examined. Data for 71 patients were evaluated (CERA, N = 34; EPO, N = 37). Compared with EPO treatment, CERA treatment caused significant decreases within 1 week in hepcidin (-93.5 ± 46.9 vs. -1.3 ± 38.3 ng/mL, P < 0.01), reticulocyte hemoglobin equivalent (Ret-He) (-4.03 ± 2.64 vs. -1.13 ± 1.41 pg, P < 0.01), ferritin (-58.9 ± 30.5 vs. -12.2 ± 23.8 ng/mL, P < 0.01) and transferrin saturation (-13.2 ± 9.1 vs. 1.0 ± 11.9%, P < 0.01) and significant increases within 2 weeks in the levels of hemoglobin (0.42 ± 0.38 vs. -0.02 ± 0.48 g/dL, P < 0.01). In conclusion, hepcidin, Ret-He, ferritin and transferrin saturation levels decreased within 1 week and hemoglobin increased within 2 weeks after CERA administration. Time course of iron-related parameters including hepcidin demonstrated accelerated iron utilization appropriately according to ESA-induced erythropoiesis.
Keywords: Anemia; Epoetin beta pegol; Erythropoiesis stimulating agents; Hemodialysis; Hepcidin.
© 2014 The Authors. Therapeutic Apheresis and Dialysis © 2014 International Society for Apheresis.