Tag Archives: 2019

Controversies Conference on Optimal Anemia Management in Chronic Kidney Disease

Dear BioIron community,

We are seeking your input into an upcoming Controversies Conference on Optimal Anemia Management in Chronic Kidney Disease that is being organized by KDIGO (Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes), an international organization whose mission is to improve the care and outcomes of kidney disease patients worldwide:

Anemia and disordered iron homeostasis are prevalent in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and associated with significant adverse consequences. As such, in December 2019 KDIGO will gather together a global panel of multidisciplinary clinical and scientific expertise to identify key issues relevant to the optimal management of anemia in CKD.

The KDIGO Optimal Anemia Management in CKD Conference will focus largely on iron, including the contribution of iron pathophysiology to the anemia of CKD and adverse patient outcomes, iron therapeutic agents, and the impact of other current and emerging anemia therapies on hemoglobin targets, iron parameters, and iron supplementation needs. The goal of this KDIGO conference is to determine best practice and areas of uncertainties in the treatment of anemia, review key relevant literature published since the 2012 KDIGO Anemia Guideline, identify new topics or issues to be revisited for the next iteration of the KDIGO guideline, and outline research needed to improve anemia management in CKD.

Drs. Tilman B. Drüeke (INSERM U-1018, Hôpital Paul Brousse, Villejuif, France) and Jodie L. Babitt (Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA) will co-chair this conference.

KDIGO makes preliminary Scope of Work documents available for public review prior to final planning of any Controversies Conference. To this end, we cordially invite your input on the Optimal Anemia Management Conference Scope of Work which can be found at the following website: 

Controversies Conference on Optimal Anemia Management in CKD – kdigo.orgThe objective of the KDIGO Controversies Conference on Optimal Anemia Management in CKD is to gather a global panel of multidisciplinary clinical and scientific expertise to identify key issues relevant to the optimal management of anemia in CKD.kdigo.org

We are seeking a broad range of feedback, including from basic scientists and clinicians outside of nephrology who have expertise in iron/anemia. Kindly submit your comments via the feedback form on the website no later than Monday, November 11th.



Jodie L. Babitt, M.D.
Associate Professor of Medicine
Harvard Medical School

MGH Research Scholar

Director of Translational Research

Nephrology Division
Massachusetts General Hospital
185 Cambridge St., CPZN 8208
Boston, MA 02114
tel. 617-643-3181
fax 617-643-3182

Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine- Oxygen takes the stage….might iron follow?

Sir Peter Ratcliffe (Oxford University) has recently been announced as this year’s winner of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine alongside William Kaelin, Jr (Harvard University) and Gregg Semenza (Johns Hopkins University). 

This prize was awarded for seminal work describing the mechanisms of oxygen sensing and control. The discovery centers on hypoxia-inducible factors (HIFs), a family of transcription factors that orchestrate cellular responses to hypoxia, thereby triggering metabolic, angiogenic and cell-cycle adaptations. In the wider physiological context, HIFs orchestrate erythropoietic and cardiopulmonary responses to hypoxia. 

Nobel Prize Medicine 2019

Under normoxic conditions, these HIF proteins are constantly produced then targeted for proteolytic degradation by the action of prolyl hydroxylases (PHDs).  These enzymes act as oxygen sensors owing to their requirement for oxygen as a substrate. Sir Ratcliffe’s laboratory helped uncover the role of these enzymes and identified the sites at which HIFs are hydroxylated (1 , 2).

Beyond enhancing our understanding of basic homeostatic control, these discoveries have also had far-reaching translational applications, most notably that of inhibiting PHDs for the treatment of anaemia.

The interplay between oxygen and iron homeostasis has long been recognised. Sir Ratcliffe himself once declared that “HIF may as well be called iron deficiency-inducible factor”. Indeed, the PHDs that regulate HIF stability require iron as a co-factor. This is reflected in the pathophysiological manifestations of iron deficiency, that often mimic the body’s response to hypoxia, e.g. pulmonary arterial hypertension. Another important aspect of this interplay is the control of renal HIF2 by Iron Regulatory Proteins (IRPs), a mechanism that is thought to couple erythropoiesis to iron availability. 

For those reasons, this Nobel prize is good news for those of us interested in iron. Over the coming years, we are likely to learn of further intersections between iron and oxygen homeostasis. The challenge will be to capitalise on these, so that iron-altering therapies could be harnessed to treat disorders of hypoxic signalling and vice versa. Another challenge for us in the iron community will be to raise the profile of iron research even further with a Nobel prize of our very own! 

We are extremely pleased to announce that Sir Ratcliffe will be the keynote speaker at the upcoming European Iron Club meeting in Oxford, 2-5 September 2020. (EIC2020)

Contributed by Prof Samira Lakhal-Littleton, Department of Physiology, Anatomy & Genetics
University of Oxford

Register for BioIron 2019

Submit Your Abstract For BioIron 2019 Today!
Dear members of the BioIron community,  
We would like to remind you that the abstract submission deadline for the 8th Congress of the International BioIron Society in Heidelberg from May 5-9, 2019 is fast approaching.  

Abstract submissions will close on the January 31, 2019. We will not be able to accept abstracts after this date. 

As we have intentionally limited the number of invited lectures, there is a great opportunity for abstracts to be selected for oral presentations in the plenary and parallel sessions based on scientific quality. Thus, we want to encourage principle investigators and more junior researchers alike to submit abstracts.  

Additionally, junior investigators who are members of the BioIron Society are able to  apply for fellowships, including registration waivers and travel fellowships. These fellowship opportunities will be available during the registration/abstract submission process. 

Please submit your abstracts covering exciting advances in iron biology – from the cell to the system, from very basic to the clinical, from mammalian to model organisms and microbial species. 
Prior to the biennial BioIron 2019 meeting, the BioIron Society has also organized, a 3-day EMBL Course on Techniques for Studying Iron in Health and Disease

Eighteen students will be selected from the list of qualified applicants and for at least nine of them the registration fees will be waived (reimbursed). The course will be held at EMBL training laboratories on May 2 – 4, 2019. All activities, materials and meals will be covered by the registration fee. Affordable accommodations will also be available. We encourage candidates to apply as early as possible.  
Looking forward to welcoming you all! 

The Organizing Committee 

Martina Muckenthaler, University of Heidelberg
Matthias Hentze, EMBL, Heidelberg 
Ioav Cabantchik, President of the Bioiron Society
EMBL Conference: 8th Congress of the International BioIron Society

EMBL Conference: 8th Congress of the International BioIron Society ATC, EMBL Heidelberg, Germany, 5 – 10 May 2019

Final Program – BioIron 2019 Final Program.pdf

Poster Listing – BioIron 2019 Poster listing.pdf

Educational day talks

1. BioIron; Origin, chemical properties and evolution – Kostas Pantopoulos

2. Iron transport proteins: Gateways of cellular and systemic iron homeostasis Mitchell Knutson

3. Mechanisms controlling cellular iron homeostasis in mammals Rick Eisenstein

4. Systemic iron homeostasis Jodie Babitt

5. Genetic diseases causing iron deficiency and overload: Two faces of the same coin Laura Silvestri

6. Erythropoiesis and iron metabolism: Crosstalk, implications, and therapeutic options in iron loading anemias Yelena Ginzburg

7. Iron in cancer, infection, kidney and liver diseases: Innocent bystander or therapeutic target?  Igor Theurl and Heinz Zoller

8. The pathophysiology and diagnosis of iron deficiency and anaemia in populations and patients  Sant-Rayn Pasricha

9. Nutritional (dietary) and “functional” deficiencies in the first and third world Michael Zimmerman

10. Open questions in basic and clinical iron research Tomas Ganz

EMBL COURSE Techniques for Studying Iron in Health and Disease

  1. EMBL Course – Introduction to practicals and experimental protocols
  2. EMBL Course – Introduction to practicals- class presentations
  3. EMBL Course – Techniques for Studying Iron in Health and Disease – Introductory lectures

Ask the Master


1. Marcel Simon Award presentation 

2. Award ceremony presentation

Poster Awards

Camile Link 
University of Heidelberg, Germany
Molecular mechanisms of Hepcidin-induced Ferroportin-downregulation
Poster 256 

Joseph Olivera
University of Florida, USA
In vivo pancreatic ß cell-specific overexpression of ZIP14 results in ß-cell iron accumulation and diabetes in iron-loaded mice
Poster 291 

Podium Awards

Joseph Frost
University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Iron powers adaptive immune responses to immunisations and influenza virus                                       Podium 99 

Nunziata Maio                                                                                                                               
National Institutes of Health, USA                                                                                             
Absence of iron-responsive element-binding protein 2 causes a novel neurodegenerative syndrome                                                                                       
Podium 64

Eliezer Rachmilewitz Award (New Award)

Paolo Porporato
University of Turin, Italy
Dysregulated iron metabolism promotes cancer cachexia
Poster 303

Meeting photos:

*Feel free to send us a link to your photos and we’ll add it here.

EMBL COURSE Techniques for Studying Iron in Health and Disease (Updated Course Description) January 17, 2019

October 19th, 2018: President letter summary of 2018

EMBL CONFERENCE 8th Congress of the International BioIron Society: https://www.embl.de/training/events/2019/BIR19-01/

EMBL Brochure (PDF): Congress-International-BioIron-Society-2019