Diagnostic utility of zinc protoporphyrin to detect iron deficiency in Kenyan pregnant women

M.N. Mwangi, S. Maskey, P.E.A. Andang'o, N.K. Shinali, J.M. Roth, L. Trijsburg, A.M. Mwangi, H. Zuilhof, B. van Lagen, H.F.J. Savelkoul, Ayse Y. Demir, J.C.M. Verhoef

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Iron-deficient erythropoiesis results in excess formation of zinc protoporphyrin (ZPP), which can be measured instantly and at low assay cost using portable haematofluorometers. ZPP is used as a screening marker of iron deficiency in individual pregnant women and children, but also to assess population iron status in combination with haemoglobin concentration. We examined associations between ZPP and disorders that are common in Africa. In addition, we assessed the diagnostic utility of ZPP (measured in whole blood and erythrocytes), alone or in combination with haemoglobin concentration, in detecting iron deficiency (plasma ferritin concentration
Original languageEnglish
Article number229
JournalBMC Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 2014



  • erythrocyte protoporphyrin
  • increased erythropoiesis
  • lactate-dehydrogenase
  • asymptomatic malaria
  • serum ferritin
  • children
  • anemia
  • hemoglobin
  • alpha(+)-thalassemia
  • hematofluorometry

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