Proteomics of copper toxicity

Simpson, D. M., Mobasheri, A., Haywood, S. & Beynon, R. J. (2007) A proteomics study of the response of North Ronaldsay sheep to copper challenge. BMC Veterinary Research BMC Vet Res. 27, 36 [PUBMED][PDF]

BACKGROUND: The objective of this proteomics study was to identify proteins that changed expression as a result of copper challenge in the uniquely copper sensitive North Ronaldsay sheep and further, to compare those changes in expression with the more copper tolerant Cambridge breed. Such data gives us a proteome-centered perspective of the pathogenesis of copper-induced oxidative stress in this breed.
RESULTS: Many proteins respond to copper challenge, but this study focuses on those exhibiting a differential response between the two breeds, related to liver copper content. As copper accumulated in the tissue, the pattern of expression of several proteins was markedly different, in North Ronaldsay sheep as compared to the Cambridge breed.
CONCLUSION: The pattern of changes was consistent with the greatly enhanced susceptibility of North Ronaldsay sheep to copper-induced oxidative stress, focused on mitochondrial disturbance with consequent activation of hepatic stellate cells. The expression profiles were sufficiently complex that the response could not simply be explained as a hypersensitivity to copper in North Ronaldsay sheep.