Berit Borch-Iohnsen

Image of Berit Borch-Iohnsen
Norwegian version of this page
Phone +47-22851333
Mobile phone +47-95027986
Room 1184

Academic interests

  • Nutrition
  • Iron metabolism
  • Iron deficiency and overload

Courses taught



  • 1978: Evaluated and declared competent as Dr. philos
  • 1964: Cand. real. (Eq. M. Sc.), University of Oslo, Zoophysiology (insect endocrinology)

Positions held

  • 2002: Professor emerita
  • 1998-2002: Senior Research Fellow (Throne-Holst Fund)
  • 1993: Professor
  • 1977: Associate Professor
  • 1975: Assistant Professor, Nordic School of Nutrition, University of Oslo
  • 1968-1975: Assistant at Zoological Institute, Univ of Oslo
  • 1965-67: Studies at Stanford University Medical School (histochemistry/electron microscopy) Scholarship from Science and Technical Research Council of Norway (NTNF)
  • 1959-65: Assistant to Prof. A. Semb-Johansson, Zoological Laboratory, Univ of Oslo (The Research Council of Norway [NRC])


  • 2009: 2nd price – best survey article: ”Hemokromatose – fra underdiagnostisert kuriositet til folkesykdom.” Tidsskr. Nor Legeforen 2009;129(9):858-62
  • 1974: H. M. King Olav’s Gold Medal for the paper "Vitellogenese in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus Dallas (Hemiptera) and the effect of the corpus allatum hormone on the ovarian tissue. A light and electron microscopical investigation". (Schreiner B. J Morphol 1977; 151: 35-80 + J Morphol 1977; 151: 81-110.)

Positions held

  • 1999-2010: Established, together with Rolv Brandtzæg and Helge Bell, Norwegian Haemochromatosis Association; member of the board 1999-2007; member of election committee 2007-10
  • 1993-95: Member of the board: Norwegian Nutrition Society
  • Referee: Eur J Clin Nutr, Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen, Scand J Nutr, Acta Paediatrica and Comp Biochem Physiol
  • 1983-84: Chairman: Norwegian Physiological Society
  • 1981-83: Member of the board: Norwegian Physiological Society
  • 1980-85: Member of the board: Scandinavian Association of Electron microscopy
  • 1979: Member of organizing committee: Scandem-79 (EM conference in Oslo)

Participation in national or Nordic scientific committees

  • 2000: Risk evaluation of iron. Report submitted by Borch-Iohnsen B; on the instructions of Norwegian Food Control Authority, Department of Food Law and International Affairs. Jan 2000, pp. 15
  • 2000: Evaluation of the permission to add iron to Norwegian brown whey cheese and whey products. Report (in Norwegian) submitted by a working group (Borch-Iohnsen B, Pedersen JI, Johansson L) appointed by the National Council on Nutrition and Physical Activity; 4/2000
  • 1993-95: Member of a Nordic project group: "Risk Evaluation of Essential Trace Elements – essential versus toxic levels of intake"; Nordic Council of Ministers 1993. (Borch-Iohnsen B, Pettersson Grawé K. Iron. Nord 1995;18:67-117)
  • 1990-95: Member of a Norwegian project group on ”Use of iron supplement in pregnancy” (inquiry from WHO/Europe) from 1990. Recommendations for selective iron supplementation in pregnancy were proposed in Norway in 1993, and included in the antenatal care guidelines for primary health care centres given by the Norwegian Board of Health 1995
Tags: Iron deficiency, Iron metabolism, Dietary iron, Nutrition, Iron overload


  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Helle C. Jern (kap. 9). I: Idrettsernæring, Garthe I, Helle C, red. Gyldendal Norsk Forlag AS. 1. utgave, 1. opplag, 2011:120-38. [ISBN 978-82-05-39186-4]
  • Meltzer HM, Brantsæter AL, Borch-Iohnsen B, Ellingsen DG, Alexander J, Thomassen Y, Stigum H, Ydersbond TA. Low iron stores are related to higher blood concentrations of cadmium, cobalt and manganese in non-smoking, Norwegian women of fertile age in the HUNT 2 Study. Environ Res 2010;110(5):497-504.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B. 11.4 Jern (Fe). I: Grunnleggende  Ernæringslære, Jan I. Pedersen, Anette Hjartåker, Sigmund A. Anderssen, red. Gyldendal Norsk Forlag AS. 1. utgave, 1. opplag, 2009:253-70. [ISBN 978-82-05-39522-0] Mitt navn står bare i forordet.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Hagve T-A, Hauge A, Thorstensen K. Regulering av jernbalansen. Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2009;129(9):858-62.
  • Hagve T-A, Åsberg A, Ulvik R, Borch-Iohnsen B, Thorstensen K. Hemokromatose – fra underdiagnostisert kuriositet til folkesykdom. Tidsskr Nor Legeforen 2009;129(9):863-6.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Thorstensen K. The iron distribution in liver and duodenum during seasonal iron overload in the Svalbard reindeer. J Comp Pathol  2009;141(1):27-40.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B. Jern i svangerskapet - er nåværende anbefalinger tilfredsstillende? Kommentarer til ”Retningslinjer for svangerskapsomsorgen” Sosial- og helsedirektoratet, 2005; IS-1179. Nor Tidsskr Ern 2008;3:28-31. ISSN- 1503 5034.
  • Hay G, Refsum H, Whitelaw A, Melbye EL, Haug E, Borch-Iohnsen B. Predictors of serum ferritin and serum soluble transferrin receptor in newborn infants and their associations with iron status during the first two years of life. Am J Clin Nutr 2007;86:64-73.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Pedersen JI, Henriksen T. Bør gravide kvinner ta jerntilskudd? Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 2006;126:2133-5.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Sandstad B, Åsberg A. Iron status among 3005 women aged 20-55 years in Central Norway: The Nord-Trøndelag Health Study (the HUNT Study). Scand J Clin Lab Invest 2005;65(1):45-54.
  • Hay G, Sandstad B, Whitelaw A, Borch-Iohnsen B. Iron status in a group of Norwegian children, 6-24 months. Acta Paediatrica 2004;93:592-8.
  • Aamodt AH, Borch-Iohnsen B, Hagen K, Stovner LJ, Åsberg A, Zwart J-A. Headache prevalence related to haemoglobin and ferritin. The HUNT Study. Cephalalgia 2004;24:758-62. Corrigendum: Ibid 24:913.
  • Sandstad B, Borch-Iohnsen B, Andersen GM et al. Selective iron supplementation based on serum ferritin values early in pregnancy: are the Norwegian recommendations satisfactory? Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand 2003;82:537-42. Erratum: Ibid 82:890.
  • Schümann K, Borch-Iohnsen B, Hentze MW, Marx JJM. Tolerable upper intakes for dietary iron set by the US Food and Nutrition Board. Am J Clin Nutr 2002;76:499-500.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Hauge A. Bør jernpreparater reseptbelegges? Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 2001;121:460-2.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Pedersen JI, Johansson L. Vurdering av tillatelsen til å tilsette jern til brunost og primprodukter. Rapport fra en arbeidsgruppe nedsatt av Statens råd for ernæring og fysisk aktivitet (SEF), Oslo, november 2000, 37 s.
  • Undlien DE, Borch-Iohnsen B, Bell H. Hemokromatose - en medisinsk utfordring. Utredning for Norsk Hemokromatoseforbund (NHF), Oslo, februar 2000, 11 s. Revidert utg. januar 2001, ISBN 82-995850-0-7.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B. Risk evaluation of iron. Utredning for Statens næringsmiddeltilsyn (SNT), Oslo, januar 2000, 15 s.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B. Brunost uten jernberikning: et godt tilbud for hvem? Utredning for Statens ernæringsråd (SE), Oslo, mars 1999, 5 s.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B. Primær hemokromatose og jern i kosten. Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1997;117:3506-7.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Førde R. Jerntilskudd i svangerskapet. Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1997;117:3263.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Trygg K. Past and present: iron status and iron intake among adults in Norway. Scand J Nutr 1997;41:125-8.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B,  Trygg K. Norwegian iron status: answers to Leif Hallberg's comments. Scand J Nutr 1997;41:188.
  • Sandstad B, Borch-Iohnsen B. Serum ferritin and selective iron prophylaxis in pregnancy? J Intern Med 1996;240:47-8.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Sellevold BJ. Hva spiste kvinner i steinalderen og hva spiser de i dag? Jern i kosten før og nå. Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1998;118:1590-1.
  • Wandel M, Fagerli RAa, Olsen PT, Borch-Iohnsen B, Ek J. Iron status and weaning practice among Norwegian and immigrant infants. Nutr Res 1996;16: 251-65.
  • Fagerli RAa, Wandel M, Olsen PT, Ek J, Thorstensen K, Brekke O-L, Borch-Iohnsen B. Iron status and diet at two years of age: a longitudinal study of  healthy Norwegian and immigrant children. Scand J Nutr 1996;40:58-63.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B. Determination of iron status: brief review of physiological effects on iron measures. The Analyst 1995;120:891-3.
  • Oshaug A, Bugge KH, Bjønnes CH, Borch-Iohnsen B, Neslein I-L. Associations between serum ferritin and cardiovascular risk factors. A cross sectional study. Eur J Clin Nutr 1995;49:430-8.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Petersson Grawé K. Iron. In: Oskarsson A, ed. Risk evaluation of  Essential Trace Elements - essential versus toxic level of intake. Report of a Nordic project group. Nordic Council of Ministers, Copenhagen. Nord 1995; 18:67-117.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Nilssen KJ, Norheim G. Influence of season and diet on tissue levels of essential elements and heavy metals in Svalbard reindeer. Biol Trace Elem Res 1996;51:235-47.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Bakkene G, Ekman M, Reizenstein P. High bioavailability of supplemental iron in a whey concentrate product. Nutr Res 1994;14:1643-8.
  • Rytter E, Førde R, Andrew M, Borch-Iohnsen B, Halvorsen R, Matheson I, Toverud E-L. Graviditet og jerntilskudd - blir de offisielle retningslinjer fulgt? Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1993;113:2416-9.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Halvorsen R, Andrew M, Matheson I, Rytter E, Førde R, Toverud E-L. Trenger vi nye retningslinjer for bruk av jerntilskudd i svangerskapet? Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1993;113:2414-5.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Halvorsen R, Stenberg V, Flesland Ø, Mowinckel P. The effect of daily low-dose iron supplements in female blood donors with depleted iron stores: comparison with female non-donors. Scand J Clin Lab Invest 1993;53: 789-91.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Holm H, Jørgensen A, Norheim G. Seasonal siderosis in female eider nesting in Svalbard. J Comp Pathol 1991;104:7-15.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Myhre K, Norheim G. Hypoxia and deposition of iron in liver and spleen of mice given iron supplement. Eur J Haematol 1990;44:56-62.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Meltzer HM, Stenberg V, Reinskou T. Iron status in a group of Norwegian menstruating women. Eur J Clin Nutr 1990;44:23-8.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Meltzer HM, Stenberg V, Reinskou T, Trygg K. Bioavailability of daily low dose iron supplements in menstruating women with low iron stores. Eur J Clin Nutr 1990;44:29-34.
  • Norheim G, Borch-Iohnsen B. Chemical and morphological studies of liver from common eider (Somateria  mollissima) from Svalbard with special reference to the distribution of copper. J Comp Pathol 1990;102:457-66.
  • Halvorsen R, Flesland Ø, Borch-Iohnsen B, Leivestad T, Solheim BG. Jernstatus hos blodgivere bedømt ved serumferritin. Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1990;110:189-91.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Meltzer HM, Stenberg V, Reinskou T, Trygg K. Kvinner og jernmangel – et problem? Tidsskr Nor Lægeforen 1989;109:1990-5.
  • Dickson DPE, Pollard RK, Borch-Iohnsen B, Ward RJ, Peters TJ. Mössbauer spectroscopic studies of haemosiderins from different sources. Hyperfine Interactions 1988;42:889-92.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Olsson KS, Nilssen KJ. Seasonal siderosis in Svalbard reindeer. Ann NY Acad Sci 1988;526:355-6.
  • Grav HJ, Borch-Iohnsen B, Dahl HA, Gabrielsen GW, Steen JB. Oxidative capacity of tissues contributing to thermogenesis in eider (Somateria mollissima) ducklings: changes associated with hatching. J Comp Physiol B 1988;158:513-8.
  • Dickson DPE, Meagher A, Nilssen KJ, Borch-Iohnsen B. Seasonal variation in the  form of iron in the liver of Spitsbergen reindeer: A Mössbauer spectroscopic study. Biochim Biophys Acta 1987;924:442-6.
  • Borch-Iohnsen B, Nilssen KJ. Seasonal iron overload of the liver in Svalbard reindeer. J Nutr 1987;117:2072-8.
  • Refsum SB, Borch-Iohnsen Schreiner B. Regulation of the iron balance by absorption and excretion. A critical review and a new hypothesis. Scand J Gastroenterol 1984;19:867-74.
  • Schreiner: name by marriage 1957-83
  • Schreiner B, Refsum SB. Iron absorption in small bowel. Lancet 1983; I:1385.
  • Refsum SB, Schreiner B. Iron excretion from the goblet cells of the small intestine  in man. An additional regulatory mechanism in the iron homeostasis? Scand J Gastroenterol 1980;15:1013-20.
  • Nordby G, Schreiner B. Influence of 4-aminopyrazolo-pyridine on morphology, synthesis of triglyceride and protein and their secretion in rat hepatocytes. Acta Pathol Microbiol Scand, Sect A 1979;87:79-85.
  • Drevon CA, Lilljeqvist A-C, Schreiner B, Norum KR. Influence of cholesterol/fat feeding on cholesterol esterification and morphological structures in the intestinal mucosa from guinea pigs. Atherosclerosis 1979;34:207-19.
  • Nordby G, Schreiner B, Berg T, Norum KR. The effect of D-galactosamine on the LCAT secretion and the morphological structures in isolated rat liver cells. Acta Pathol Microbiol Scand, Sect A 1977;85:839-49.
  • Schreiner B. Vitellogenesis in the milkweed bug Oncopeltus fasciatus Dallas (Hemiptera). A light and electron microscopic study. J Morphol 1977;151:35-80.
  • Schreiner B. The effect of the hormone(s) from the corpus allatum complex on the ovarian tissue of Oncopeltus fasciatus. A light and electron microscopic study. J Morphol 1977;151:81-110.
  • Silverman L, Schreiner B, Glick D. Measurement of the thickness within sections by quantitative electron microscopy. J Cell Biol 1969;40:768-72.
  • Schreiner B, Staaland H, Semb-Johansson A. Functional significance of the neurosecretory cells in the last abdominal ganglion of the lobster, Homarus vulgaris L. Gen Comp Endocrinol 1969;13:399-402.
  • Schreiner B. Histochemistry of the A cell neurosecretory material in the milkweed  bug, Oncopeltus fasciatus (Dallas)(Heteroptera: Lygaeidae), with a discussion of the neurosecretory material/carrier substance problem. Gen Comp Endocrinol 1966;6:388-400.
  • Johansson AS, Schreiner B. Intestinal tumours in the German cockroach Blatella germanica L. Nature 1966;212:845.
  • Johansson AS, Schreiner B. Neurosecretory cells in the ventral ganglia of the lobster, Homarus vulgaris L. Gen Comp Endocrinol 1965;5:558-67.
  • Thorstensen, Ketil; Kvitland, Mona; Åsberg, Arne; Irgens, Wenche Elna Øiestad; Borch-Iohnsen, Berit; Moen, Torolf & Hveem, Kristian (2017). Iron loading in HFE p.C282Y homozygotes found by population screening: relationships to HLA-type and T-lymphocyte subsets. Scandinavian Journal of Clinical and Laboratory Investigation.  ISSN 0036-5513.  77(7), s 477- 485 . doi: 10.1080/00365513.2017.1342136
  • Meltzer, Helle Margrete; Alexander, Jan; Brantsæter, Anne Lise; Borch-Iohnsen, Berit; Ellingsen, Dag G.; Thomassen, Yngvar; Holmen, Jostein & Ydersbond, Trond A. (2016). The impact of iron status and smoking on blood divalent metal concentrations in Norwegian women in the HUNT2 Study. Journal of Trace Elements in Medicine and Biology.  ISSN 0946-672X.  38, s 165- 173 . doi: 10.1016/j.jtemb.2016.04.008
  • Åsberg, Arne; Borch-Iohnsen, Berit; Mikkelsen, Gustav; Thorstensen, Ketil & Åsberg, Ann Elisabeth (2015). Lower hemoglobin with lower ferritin - Results from the HUNT 2 Study. Scandinavian Journal of Clinical and Laboratory Investigation.  ISSN 0036-5513.  75(2), s 152- 155 . doi: 10.3109/00365513.2014.993335
  • Åsberg, Arne; Thorstensen, Ketil & Borch-Iohnsen, Berit (2012). Unbound iron binding capacity (UIBC) as a test for empty iron stores - results from the HUNT Study. Scandinavian Journal of Clinical and Laboratory Investigation.  ISSN 0036-5513.  72(6), s 506- 509 . doi: 10.3109/00365513.2012.713230
  • Borch-Iohnsen, Berit & Helle, Christine (2011). Jern, I: Ina Gun Garthe & Christine Helle (red.),  Idrettsernæring.  Gyldendal Norsk Forlag.  ISBN 978-82-05-39186-4.  9.  s 120 - 138
  • Meltzer, Helle Margrete; Brantsæter, Anne Lise; Borch-Iohnsen, Berit; Ellingsen, Dag; Alexander, Jan; Thomassen, Yngvar; Stigum, Hein & Ydersbond, Trond Arild (2010). Low iron stores are related to higher blood concentrations of manganese, cobalt and cadmium in non-smoking, Norwegian women in the HUNT 2 study. Environmental Research.  ISSN 0013-9351.  110(5), s 497- 504 . doi: 10.1016/j.envres.2010.03.006
  • Borch-Iohnsen, Berit; Hagve, Tor-Arne; Hauge, Anton & Thorstensen, Ketil (2009). Regulering av jernbalansen. Tidsskrift for Den norske legeforening.  ISSN 0029-2001.  129(9), s 858- 862 . doi: 10.4045/tidsskr.08.0083
  • Borch-Iohnsen, Berit & Thorstensen, K. (2009). Iron Distribution in the Liver and Duodenum during Seasonal Iron Overload in Svalbard Reindeer. Journal of Comparative Pathology.  ISSN 0021-9975.  141(1), s 27- 40 . doi: 10.1016/j.jcpa.2009.02.001
  • Borch-Iohnsen, Berit & Thorstensen, Ketil (2009). The iron distribution in liver and duodenum during seasonal iron overload in the Svalbard reindeer. Journal of Comparative Pathology.  ISSN 0021-9975.  141(1), s 27- 40 . doi: 10.1016/j.jcpa.2009.02.001

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  • Borch-Iohnsen, Berit (2009). Jern, I:  Grunnleggende ernæringslære.  Gyldendal Akademisk.  ISBN 978-82-05-39522-0.  pkt 11.4.  s 253 - 267

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Published Apr. 13, 2011 2:40 PM - Last modified June 1, 2011 9:04 AM