Early and advanced glycation end-products are increased in dietary copper deficiency

J Nutr Biochem. 1999 Apr;10(4):210-4. doi: 10.1016/s0955-2863(98)00100-4.


The hypothesis that nonenzymatic glycosylation of proteins (glycation) contributes to damage associated with dietary copper deficiency has depended largely on indirect evidence. Thus far, the observation of an elevated percentage of glycated hemoglobin in copper-deficient rats has provided the only direct evidence of an increase in glycation. We sought further direct evidence of increased glycation in copper deficiency. Male weanling rats were fed a copper-adequate (CuA, 6.4 mg Cu/kg diet) or copper-deficient diet (CuD, 0.4 mg Cu/kg diet) for 5 weeks. Rats fed the CuD diet were copper deficient as judged by depressed organ copper concentrations and a variety of indirect indices. Measurements of hemoglobin A(1) and serum fructosamine (both early glycation end-products) as well as serum pentosidine (an advanced glycation end-product) indicated that all three compounds were elevated in CuD rats relative to CuA rats. This finding further supports the view that glycation is enhanced and thus may contribute to defects associated with dietary copper deficiency.