The use of iron as a therapeutic agent in the treatment for anemia and debilitating conditions is one of the oldest of therapeutic measures. Beginning with the end of the last century, workers began to study its physiologic action. In 1880, Gottlieb1 administered iron subcutaneously to study its action; he found that 70 per cent was excreted in the feces. Ziegler,2 using the same method, found iron only in the Kupffer cells of the liver, and Hoffman3 showed that the administration of medicinal preparations of iron lead to its accumulation in the liver and spleen. In 1900, Cloetta4 first demonstrated that the absorption of iron takes place from the duodenum.
In 1928, Polson5 contributed his classic studies on the fate of colloidal iron administered intravenously. After injection into rabbits, he found iron in the Kupffer cells of the liver from one minute to nine days