Correction of the copper transport defect of Menkes patient fibroblasts by expression of the Menkes and Wilson ATPases.J Biol Chem. 1998 Nov 20; 273(47):31375-80.JB
Menkes' disease is a fatal, X-linked, copper deficiency disorder that results from defective copper efflux from intestinal cells and inadequate copper delivery to other tissues, leading to deficiencies of critical copper-dependent enzymes. Wilson's disease is an autosomally inherited, copper toxicosis disorder resulting from defective biliary excretion of copper, which leads to copper accumulation in the liver. The ATP7A and ATP7B genes that are defective in patients with Menkes' and Wilson's diseases, respectively, encode transmembrane, P-type ATPase proteins (ATP7A or MNK and ATP7B or WND, respectively) that function to translocate copper across cellular membranes. In this study, the cDNAs derived from a normal human ATP7A gene and the murine ATP7B homologue, Atp7b, were separately transfected into an immortalized fibroblast cell line obtained from a Menkes' disease patient. Both MNK and WND expressed from plasmid constructs were able to correct the copper accumulation and copper retention phenotype of these cells. However, the two proteins responded differently to elevated extracellular copper levels. Although MNK showed copper-induced trafficking from the trans-Golgi network to the plasma membrane, in the same cell line the intracellular location of WND did not appear to be affected by elevated copper.