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Iron TIBC

Total Iron Binding Capacity TIBC Magnesium chloride precipitation

The serum total iron-binding capacity (TIBC) represents the maximum concentration of iron that can be bound by an organisms´ serum protein.

About 65% of the iron in the body is in hemoglobin (in red blood cells) and about 4% in myoglobin (in skeletal muscle). About 30% of the iron in the body is stored (as ferritin or hemosiderin) in liver, bone marrow, and reticuloendothelial cells of the spleen. A small percentage of the body's iron is in transport between various compartments of the body (in association with transferrin) or is a component of enzymes in cells throughout the body. Free iron is very reactive (it stimulates free radical reactions) and is not normally in body fluids. Serum iron, as measured in the clinical laboratory, is really transferrin-associated ferric iron. Each transferrin molecule can carry 2 iron atoms. Normally about 30% of the available sites are filled. This is called the percent transferrin saturation. By completely saturating all the available binding sites, it is possible to measure the total iron binding capacity (TIBC). This is a measure of the transferrin level in the serum. TIBC is usually elevated when total body iron stores are low. TIBC and percent transferrin saturation are usually measured at the same time serum iron is measured.

The TIBC is increased in iron deficiency anemia, polycythemia vera, pregnancy, hepatitis, and the use of birth control pills. The TIBC is decreased in malnutrition and hemochromatosis.

Intended use

In vitro test for the quantitative determination of total iron binding in human serum

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