Iron is an essential micronutrient for both microbial pathogens and their mammalian hosts. Changes in iron availability and distribution have significant effects on pathogen virulence and on the immune response to infection. Recent advances in our understanding of the molecular regulation of iron metabolism have shed new light on how alterations in iron homeostasis both contribute to and influence innate immunity. In this article, we review what is currently known about the role of iron in the response to infection.
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