Content of copper in brain tissue under normal conditions and in some diseases of the nervous system

  • B. M. Gekht
Biochemistry and Biophysics


Copper content was determined spectrographi cally in various portions of the brain in 10 healthy patients who died accidentally, in the brain of a patient with hepatolenticular degeneration, as well as in various tumors of the brain and areas of the nervous system not affected by neoplasms. The greatest copper content was noted in the globus pallidus, nucleus caudatus and the cortex of the large hemispheres. The copper concentration in the brain of patients with hepatolenticular degeneration is considerably higher than in the accidentally dead persons. As shown, less copper is contained in the lateral portions of the optic thalamus than in the medial portions. The concentration of copper was almost even in the anterior and the posterior portions of the hypothalamic area. Copper content is increased in the areas of the brain not affected by neoplasms. Copper content in the brain tumors of membranous-vascular genesis is lower than in the white matter. Much copper was detected in benign neuroectodermic tumors. The highest copper content was noted in malignant neuroectodermal tumors (higher than in the brain tissue richest in copper). In malignant tumors copper content was higher at the periphery of the neoplasm, in the area of intensive cellular growth and glycolysis. The significance of copper for the activity of the nervous system and metabolism in tumors is discussed.


Copper White Matter Brain Tissue Copper Concentration Copper Content 
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Copyright information

© Consultants Bureau Enterprises, Inc. 1961

Authors and Affiliations

  • B. M. Gekht
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Clinic on Nervous DiseasesI. M. Sechenov I Moscow Order of Lenin Medical InstituteMoscow
  2. 2.Laboratory of Neurohormonal Regulation, Institute of Higher Nervous ActivityAN SSSRMoscow

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