Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 5, Issue 3, pp 195–204 | Cite as

Cadmium-copper interaction in intestinal mucosal cell cytosol of mice

  • D. R. Bourcier
  • R. P. Sharma
  • W. M. Bracken
  • M. J. Taylor
Original Articles


In vivo as well as in vitro protein-metal interaction was studied in cytosolic fractions from intestinal mucosal cells. Female Swiss-Webster mice wre pretreated with cadmium (25 ppm) or copper (100 ppm) in drinking water for 3 weeks. Treatment groups were divided into subgroups receiving Cd or Cd+Cu for an additional 6 weeks. In the in vitro study, mucosal cytosol obtained from pretreated animals was incubated with Cd-109 or Cd-109+Cu. Proteins were separated by gel filtration chromatography and metals determined by furnace AAS or gamma-spectrometry. Cadmium-induced synthesis of metallothionein-like proteins (MTP) in cytosol was indicated by increased Cd in those eluted fractions corresponding to the molecular weight of purified equine renal metallothionein. This cadmium level reached a plateau after 3 weeks of cadmium treatment. In addition, an increased amount of cadmium bound to MTP was noted when copper was added to cadmium in drinking water of mice pretreated with copper. This was not the case for Cd-pretreated animals. The in vitro experiments produced similar results, in that MTP fractions retained a greater percentage of Cd when animals were pretreated with copper compared to controls. Cadmium pretreatment resulted in even higher amounts of cadmium bound to MTP. The existence of a Cd as well as a separate Cu MTP, each with specific metal-binding properties, is suggested.

Index Entries

Cadmium, interaction with Cu copper, interaction with Cd zinc, metal-macromolecular interaction of intestinal mucosal cells metallothionein-like proteins mucosal cells, Cd−Cu interaction in mouse, Cd−Cu interaction in 


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Copyright information

© The Humana Press Inc. 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. R. Bourcier
    • 1
  • R. P. Sharma
    • 1
  • W. M. Bracken
    • 1
  • M. J. Taylor
    • 1
  1. 1.Toxicology ProgramUtah State UniversityLogan

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