Removal and efflux of copper from Cu-metallothionein as Cu/tetrathiomolybdate complex in LEC rats

Res Commun Mol Pathol Pharmacol. 1995 May;88(2):196-204.


Tetrathiomolybdate (TTM) removes copper (Cu) accumulating in a form bound to metallothionein (MT) in the liver of LEC rats (Long-Evans rats with a cinnamon-like coat color). The first step in the removal of Cu from Cu-MT has been shown to form a complex between MT and TTM through (MT)-S-Cu-S-(TTM) bridges (referred to as MT/TTM complex). Additional TTM was demonstrated to remove Cu from MT/TTM complex as the second step to form Cu/TTM complex by liberating MT. The Cu/TTM complex binds specifically to albumin in serum and to high molecular weight proteins in the absence of albumin, and is assumed to be a form of Cu for efflux by the treatment with TTM.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cadmium / metabolism
  • Copper / metabolism*
  • Metallothionein / metabolism*
  • Molybdenum / metabolism*
  • Protein Binding
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Serum Albumin / metabolism
  • Zinc / metabolism


  • Serum Albumin
  • Cadmium
  • Copper
  • Molybdenum
  • Metallothionein
  • tetrathiomolybdate
  • Zinc