Objective: To assess iron bioavailability of three iron-biofortified maizes using an in vitro digestion/Caco-2 cell culture model. Method: Three maize varieties rich in iron (Zhongtie 2, 3 and 4) and two maize varieties with lower content of iron (Zhengda 818 and 619) were pulverized, and the content of iron and phosphorus in each maize variety was measured. After digestion the iron bioavailability per g food was determined by using Caco-2 cell ferritin formation per mg cell protein as indicator. Results: The iron content (33.250 mg/kg), iron bioavailability and the iron bioavailability per g food of Zhongtie 2 maize was the highest among all varieties, but its phosphorus content was lower. The maize varieties with the next higher iron bioavailability were Zhongtie 3 and Zhengda 818, and the lowest was Zhengda 619. Conclusion: Zhongtie 2 maize contained the highest content and bioavailability of iron, so it was optimal to use for the following human trials.
Zhang MingQiu; Wang KangNing; Lei Ji; Yue XiangFeng; Xie ChuanXiao; Huang ChengYu. Assessment of iron bioavailability of iron biofortified maize using in vitro digestion/Caco-2 cell culture model. Acta Nutrimenta Sinica (2009) 31 (6) 547-551.