- Human pathology

Home > A. Molecular pathology > Cu


Sunday 8 June 2003

Copper (Cu) is required for aerobic life and yet, paradoxically, is highly toxic. This apparent contradiction has been rationalized by assuming that Cu, like other redox-active metals, is sequestered in nonreactive forms as it is transported into cells and moves through cellular compartments.

Iron (Fe) and copper (Cu) can catalyze the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROSs). The levels of these reactive forms are minimized by binding of the ions to storage and transport proteins (e.g., transferrin, ferritin, lactoferrin, and ceruloplasmin), thereby minimizing OH formation.

Copper (Cu) is detected by rhodanine staining or rubeanic acid methods.


- hepatic accumulation of copper


- Mercer JF. The molecular basis of copper-transport diseases. Trends Mol Med. 2001 Feb;7(2):64-9. PMID: 11286757