Increased copper levels in in vitro and in vivo models of Niemann-Pick C disease.
ABSTRACT Niemann-Pick type C disease (NPC) is a hereditary neurovisceral atypical lipid storage disorder produced by mutations in the NPC1 and NPC2 genes. The disease is characterized by unesterified cholesterol accumulation in late endosomal/lysosomal compartments and oxidative stress. The most affected tissues are the cerebellum and the liver. The lysotropic drug U18666A (U18) has been widely used as a pharmacological model to induce the NPC phenotype in several cell culture lines. It has already been reported that there is an increase in copper content in hepatoma Hu7 cells treated with U18. We confirmed this result with another human hepatoma cell line, HepG2, treated with U18 and supplemented with copper in the media. However, in mouse hippocampal primary cultures treated under similar conditions, we did not find alterations in copper content. We previously reported increased copper content in the liver of Npc1 (-/-) mice compared to control animals. Here, we extended the analysis to the copper content in the cerebella, the plasma and the bile of NPC1 deficient mice. We did not observe a significant change in copper content in the cerebella, whereas we found increased copper content in the plasma and decreased copper levels in the bile of Npc1(-/-) mice. Finally, we also evaluated the plasma content of ceruloplasmin, and we found an increase in this primary copper-binding protein in Npc1 (-/-) mice. These results indicate cell-type dependence of copper accumulation in NPC disease and suggest that copper transport imbalance may be relevant to the liver pathology observed in NPC disease.
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ABSTRACT: Copper [Cu(II)] is an ubiquitous transition and trace element in living organisms. It increases reactive oxygen species (ROS) and free-radical generation that might damage biomolecules like DNA, proteins, and lipids. Furthermore, ability of Cu(II) greatly increases in the presence of oxidants. ROS, like hydroxyl (.OH) and superoxide (.O(2)) radicals, alter both the structure of the DNA double helix and the nitrogen bases, resulting in mutations like the AT-->GC and GC-->AT transitions. Proteins, on the other hand, suffer irreversible oxidations and loss in their biological role. Thus, the aim of this investigation is to characterize, in vitro, the structural effects caused by ROS and Cu(II) on bacteriophage lambda DNA or proteins using either hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)) or ascorbic acid with or without Cu(II). Exposure of DNA to ROS-generating mixtures results in electrophoretic (DNA breaks), spectrophotometric (band broadening, hypochromic, hyperchromic, and bathochromic effects), and calorimetric (denaturation temperature [T(d)], denaturation enthalpy [DeltaH], and heat capacity [C(p)] values) changes. As for proteins, ROS increased their thermal stability. However, the extent of the observed changes in DNA and proteins were distinct, depending on the efficiency of the systems assayed to generate ROS. The resulting effects were most evident when Cu(II) was present. In summary, these results show that the ROS, .O2 and .OH radicals, generated by the Cu(II) systems assayed deeply altered the chemical structure of both DNA and proteins. The physiological relevance of these structural effects should be further investigated.Biological Trace Element Research 03/2005; 103(3):229-48. · 1.31 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Niemann-Pick type C disease (NPC) is a neurovisceral lipid storage disorder mainly characterized by unesterified cholesterol accumulation in lysosomal/late endosomal compartments, although there is also an important storage for several other kind of lipids. The main tissues affected by the disease are the liver and the cerebellum. Oxidative stress has been described in various NPC cells and tissues, such as liver and cerebellum. Although considerable alterations occur in the liver, the pathological mechanisms involved in hepatocyte damage and death have not been clearly defined. Here, we assessed hepatic tissue integrity, biochemical and oxidative stress parameters of wild-type control (Npc1(+/+); WT) and homozygous-mutant (Npc1(-/-); NPC) mice. In addition, the mRNA abundance of genes encoding proteins associated with oxidative stress, copper metabolism, fibrosis, inflammation and cholesterol metabolism were analyzed in livers and cerebella of WT and NPC mice. We analyzed various oxidative stress parameters in the liver and hepatic and cerebellum gene expression in 7-week-old NPC1-deficient mice compared with control animals. We found signs of inflammation and fibrosis in NPC livers upon histological examination. These signs were correlated with increased levels of carbonylated proteins, diminished total glutathione content and significantly increased total copper levels in liver tissue. Finally, we analyzed liver and cerebellum gene expression patterns by qPCR and microarray assays. We found a correlation between fibrotic tissue and differential expression of hepatic as well as cerebellar genes associated with oxidative stress, fibrosis and inflammation in NPC mice. In NPC mice, liver disease is characterized by an increase in fibrosis and in markers associated with oxidative stress. NPC is also correlated with altered gene expression, mainly of genes involved in oxidative stress and fibrosis. These findings correlate with similar parameters in cerebellum, as has been previously reported in the NPC mice model.PLoS ONE 01/2011; 6(12):e28777. · 3.73 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Cu is an essential cofactor of cellular proteins but is toxic in its free state. The hepatic Cu-ATPase ATP7B has two functions in Cu homeostasis: it loads Cu+ onto newly synthesized apoceruloplasmin in the secretory pathway, thereby activating the plasma protein; and it participates in the excretion of excess Cu+ into the bile. To carry out these two functions, the membrane protein responds to changes in intracellular Cu levels by cycling between the Golgi and apical region. We used polarized hepatic WIF-B cells and high-resolution confocal microscopy to map the itinerary of endogenous and exogenous ATP7B under different Cu conditions. In Cu-depleted cells, ATP7B resided in a post-trans-Golgi network compartment that also contained syntaxin 6, whereas in Cu-loaded cells, the protein relocated to unique vesicles very near to the apical plasma membrane as well as the membrane itself. To determine the role of ATP7B's cytoplasmic NH2 terminus in regulating its intracellular movements, we generated seven mutations/deletions in this large [approximately 650 amino acid (AA)] domain and analyzed the Cu-dependent behavior of the mutant ATP7B proteins in WIF-B cells. Truncation of the ATP7B NH2 terminus up to the fifth copper-binding domain (CBD5) yielded an active ATPase that was insensitive to cellular Cu levels and constitutively trafficked to the opposite (basolateral) plasma membrane domain. Fusion of the NH2-terminal 63 AA of ATP7B to the truncated protein restored both its Cu responsiveness and correct intracellular targeting. These results indicate that important targeting information is contained in this relatively short sequence, which is absent from the related CuATPase, ATP7A.AJP Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology 12/2005; 289(5):G904-16. · 3.65 Impact Factor
Mary Carmen Vázquez