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This free course, Iron transport and storage, looks at the methods that have been developed by organisms for the uptake, transport and storage of iron: a process made more complicated by the insolubility of its oxides and hydroxides. You will examine iron storage in mammals, including humans,. This is achieved by ferritin which stores iron as a hydrated iron (III) oxide an example of biomineralisation.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- describe some of the biochemical methods by which organisms uptake iron
- describe some of the biochemical processes by which organisms store and transfer iron
- explain why iron is present only in very low concentrations in aqueous solution
- use aspects of iron(III) chemistry to explain the role of macrocyclic ligands in iron uptake and transfer.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 How do organisms acquire iron?
- 2 Principles of iron chemistry
- 3 Iron uptake by organisms
- 4 Iron transport and storage
- 5 Conclusion
- Keep on learning
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn, track your progress and on completion gain a statement of participation to demonstrate your learning to others. Make your learning visible!
Iron transport and storage
In this course we will see that, despite having a high natural abundance, iron is in very short supply because of the insolubility of its oxides and hydroxides. A result of this is that organisms have developed methods for the uptake, transport and storage of iron. For example, iron storage in mammals, including humans, is achieved by ferritin, which stores iron as a hydrated iron(III) oxide – an example of biomineralisation.
This OpenLearn course provides a sample of Level 3 study in.
This free course includes adapted extracts from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Chemistry courses or view the range of currently available OU Chemistry courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Wednesday, 2nd March 2016
Last updated on: Wednesday, 2nd March 2016
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements and our FAQs section.
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