Gender effects on plasma and brain copper

Joseph F. Quinn, Christopher Harris, Jeffrey A. Kaye, Babett Lind, Raina Carter, Thimmappa Anekonda, Martina Ralle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


The effect of gender on systemic and brain levels of copper is relatively understudied. We examined gender effects in mice and human subjects. We observed a trend to higher serum copper levels in female compared to male LaFerla triple transgenic (1399 ± 233 versus 804 ± 436 ng/mL, P = 0.06) mice, and significantly higher brain copper levels in female- versus male wild-type mice (5.2 ± 0.2 versus 4.18 ± 0.3 ng/mg wet wt, P = 0.03). Plasma copper was significantly correlated with brain copper in mice (R2=0.218; P = 0.038). Among human subjects with AD, both plasma copper (1284 ± 118 versus 853 ± 81 ng/mL, P = 0.005) and cerebrospinal fluid copper (12.8 ± 1 versus 10.4 ± 0.7 ng/mL, P = 0.01) were elevated in women compared to men. Among healthy control subjects, plasma copper (1008 ± 51 versus 836 ± 41 ng/mL; P = 0.01) was higher in women than in men, but there was no difference in cerebrospinal fluid copper. We conclude that gender differences in copper status may influence copper-mediated pathological events in the brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number150916
JournalInternational Journal of Alzheimer's Disease
StatePublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Gender effects on plasma and brain copper'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this