Iron is needed by all mammalian cells but is toxic in excess. Specialized transport mechanisms conduct iron across cellular membranes. These are regulated to ensure homeostasis both systemically in living organisms and within individual cells. Over the past decade, major advances have been made in identifying and characterizing the proteins involved in the transport, handling, and homeostatic regulation of iron. Molecular understanding of these processes has provided important insights into the pathophysiology of human iron disorders.
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