Positron emission tomography for measurement of copper fluxes in live organisms

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13 Scopus citations


Copper is an essential nutrient for the physiology of live organisms, but excessive copper can be harmful. Copper radioisotopes are used for measurement of copper fluxes in live organisms using a radioactivity assay of body fluids or whole-body positron emission tomography (PET). Hybrid positron emission tomography-computed tomography (PET/CT) is a versatile tool for real-time measurement of copper fluxes combining the high sensitivity and quantification capability of PET and the superior spatial resolution of CT for anatomic localization of radioactive tracer activity. Kinetic analysis of copper metabolism in the liver and extrahepatic tissues of Atp7b-/- knockout mice, a mouse model of Wilson's disease, demonstrated the feasibility of measuring copper fluxes in live organisms with PET/CT using copper-64 chloride (64CuCl2) as a radioactive tracer (64CuCl2-PET/CT). 64CuCl2-PET/CT holds potential as a useful tool for the diagnosis of inherited and acquired human copper metabolism disorders and for monitoring the effects of copper-modulating therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)24-31
Number of pages8
JournalAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2014


  • Copper metabolism
  • Copper-64 chloride
  • Menkes disease
  • PET/CT
  • Positron emission tomography
  • Wilson's disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • History and Philosophy of Science


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