DOI: 10.3390/life13122338 ISSN: 2075-1729

Sodium–Glucose Transporter 2 (SGLT2) Inhibitors and Iron Deficiency in Heart Failure and Chronic Kidney Disease: A Literature Review

Maria Tziastoudi, Georgios Pissas, Spyridon Golfinopoulos, Georgios Filippidis, Periklis Dousdampanis, Theodoros Eleftheriadis, Ioannis Stefanidis
  • Paleontology
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Heart failure (HF) and chronic kidney disease (CKD) are associated with high mortality. In both disorders, impaired iron homeostasis, mostly in the form of a functional iron deficiency, is a frequent co-morbidity. In HF, functional iron deficiency and management by i.v. iron supplementation have been proven to affect both prognosis and functional capacity. In the same context, iron supplementation is routine for the adequate management of renal anemia in CKD. In numerous recent studies in HF and in CKD, sodium–glucose transporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitor treatment has been proven to significantly reduce mortality. Furthermore, the same trials showed that these drugs alleviate iron deficiency and anemia. These effects of SGLT2 inhibitors may be due to an amelioration of inflammation with reduced interleukin-6 (IL-6) and to an enhancement of autophagy with increased sirtuin 1 (SIRT1), both associated with modified production of hepcidin and enhanced ferritinophagy. However, the exact pathogenic basis of the beneficial SGLT2 inhibitor action is not fully elucidated. Nevertheless, effects on iron homeostasis might be a potential explanatory mechanism for the powerful SGLT2 inhibitors’ cardiovascular and renal outcome benefits. In addition, the interaction between iron supplementation and SGLT2 inhibitors and its potential impact on prognosis remains to be clarified by future studies. This review represents a significant effort to explore the complex relationships involved, seeking to elucidate the intricate mechanisms by which SGLT2 inhibitors influence iron homeostasis.

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