Inorganic Ions Metabolism

Author: Gianpiero Pescarmona
Date: 10/05/2008


Iodine a non-metallic trace element, is required by humans for the synthesis of thyroid hormones. Iodine deficiency is an important health problem throughout much of the world. Most of the earth's iodine is found in oceans, and iodine content in the soil varies with region. The older an exposed soil surface, the more likely the iodine has been leached away by erosion. Mountainous regions, such as the Himalayas, the Andes, and the Alps, and flooded river valleys, such as the Ganges, are among the most severely iodine-deficient areas in the world

Linus Pauling Institute

Iodine dietary supply

Iodine deficiency

Iodine Deficiency a problem 2001

Markers of Iodine Deficiency

Iodine absorption

Sodium-iodide symporter - NIS

Iodine transport

Evidence that the administration of Vitamin C improves a defective cellular transport mechanism for iodine: A Case Report

Iodine disposal

Iodine and the Kidney

Methods of Urinary Iodine Measurement

Methods of Urinary Iodine Measurement 2

Methods of Urinary Iodine Measurement 3

Supplemental Information at the Iodine Group

Urinary Iodine Determination 2000

2013-07-06T08:03:09 - Laura Ballatore


Iodide uptake is a critical first step in thyroid hormone synthesis. Ingested iodine is bound to serum proteins, particularly albumin. Unbound iodine is excreted in the urine. Iodide uptake is mediated by NIS , which is expressed at the basolateral membrane of thyroid follicular cells. NIS is most highly expressed in the thyroid gland, but low levels are present in the salivary glands, lactating breast, and placenta. The iodide transport mechanism is highly regulated, allowing adaptation to variations in dietary supply. Low iodine levels increase the amount of NIS and stimulate uptake, whereas high iodine levels suppress NIS expression and uptake. The selective expression of NIS in the thyroid allows isotopic scanning, treatment of hyperthyroidism, and ablation of thyroid cancer with radioisotopes of iodine, without significant effects on other organs. Mutation of the NIS gene is a rare cause of congenital hypothyroidism, underscoring its importance in thyroid hormone synthesis. Another iodine transporter, pendrin, is located on the apical surface of thyroid cells and mediates iodine efflux into the lumen. Mutation of the pendrin gene causes Pendred syndrome, a disorder characterized by defective organification of iodine, goiter, and sensorineural deafness.

Iodine deficiency is prevalent in many mountainous regions and in central Africa, central South America, and northern Asia. Europe remains mildly iodine deficient and health surveys indicate that iodine intake has been falling in the United States and Australia. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that about 2 billion people are iodine-deficient, based on urinary excretion data. In areas of relative iodine deficiency, there is an increased prevalence of goiter and, when deficiency is severe, hypothyroidism and cretinism. Cretinism is characterized by mental and growth retardation and occurs when children who live in iodine-deficient regions are not treated with iodine or thyroid hormone to restore normal thyroid hormone levels during early life. These children are often born to mothers with iodine deficiency, and it is likely that maternal thyroid hormone deficiency worsens the condition. Concomitant selenium deficiency may also contribute to the neurologic manifestations of cretinism. Iodine supplementation of salt, bread, and other food substances has markedly reduced the prevalence of cretinism. Unfortunately, however, iodine deficiency remains the most common cause of preventable mental deficiency, often because of societal resistance to food additives or the cost of supplementation. In addition to overt cretinism, mild iodine deficiency can lead to subtle reduction of IQ. Oversupply of iodine, through supplements or foods enriched in iodine (e.g., shellfish, kelp), is associated with an increased incidence of autoimmune thyroid disease. The recommended average daily intake of iodine is 150–250 g/d for adults, 90–120 g/d for children, and 250 g/d for pregnant and lactating women. Urinary iodine is >10 g/dL in iodine-sufficient.

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