Shiyang Li, Tengjiao Guo, Wei Guo, Xuan Cui, Mingyong Zeng, Haohao Wu
Polyphosphates are widely used food additives with the potential to increase iron bioavailability but chemical nature of their soluble complexes with iron remains largely unknown. Here, pyrophosphate, tripolyphosphate, hexametaphosphate and ∼25-chain-length polyphosphate solubilized 896, 896, 1120 and 1344 mg Fe(III) per g, respectively, at neutral pH by mediating the formation of highly-negatively-charged ferric hydroxide-polyphosphate nanoparticles (PolyP-FeONPs). PolyP-FeONPs displayed fading yellow color with increasing initial dissolved P/Fe ratio ((P/Fe)init) and decreasing polyphosphate length due to rising proportion of Fe(III)-phosphate bonds, and specifically, pyrophosphate resulted colorless PolyP-FeONPs at (P/Fe)init ≥ 4. PolyP-FeONPs had weak pro-oxidant activity in glyceryl trilinoleate emulsion and good colloidal stability under spray/freeze-drying and gastrointestinal conditions. Serum iron kinetics in rats revealed sustained iron release and ∼170% iron bioavailability of oral PolyP-FeONPs relative to FeSO4. Calcein-fluorescence-quenching assay in polarized Caco-2 cells unveiled divalent-metal-transporter-1-independent and macropinocytosis-dependent iron uptake from PolyP-FeONPs. This study helps develop food-compatible, highly-bioavailable and sustained-release iron preparations.
Caco-2 cells; Endocytosis; Nanoparticles; Polyphosphates; Relative iron availability