Ceruloplasmin, copper ions, and angiogenesis

K. S. Raju, G. Alessandri, M. Ziche, P. M. Gullino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The ability to induce new formation of capillaries in the cornea was tested for ceruloplasmin, the copper carrier of serum, for fragments of the ceruloplasmin molecule with and without copper, for heparin, and for glycyl-L-histidyl-L-lysine, bound or not bound to copper ions. Male or female 2- to 3-kg New Zealand White rabbits were used. These experiments were prompted by the previous observation of copper accumulation in the cornea during angiogenesis and by the inability of copper-deficient rabbits to mount an angiogenic response. The results showed that the three different molecules were all able to induce angiogenesis provided that they were bound to copper. Fragments of the ceruloplasmin molecule also induced angiogenesis but only when copper was bound to the peptides. The data are interpreted to indicate that copper ions are involved in the sequence of events leading to angiogenesis and that the carrier molecules may be of quite a different nature.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1183-1188
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the National Cancer Institute
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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