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Effects of Dietary Glucose and Fructose on Copper, Iron, and Zinc Metabolism Parameters in Humans

Department of Chemistry, University of California Davis, One Shields drive, Davis, CA 95616, USA
Department of Molecular Biosciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California Davis, 2211 VM3B, Davis, CA 95616, USA
Max Rubner-Institut, Institute of Child Nutrition, Haid-und-Neu-Strasse 9, 76131 Karlsruhe, Germany
Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of California Davis, 4150 V Street, PSSB Suite 3500, Sacramento, CA 95817, USA
Department of Nutrition, University of California Davis, One Shields drive, Davis, CA 95616, USA
United States Department of Agriculture, Western Human Nutrition Research Center, Davis, CA 95616, USA
Department of Pediatrics, School of Medicine, University of California Davis, 2516 Stockton Blvd, Ste 384, Sacramento, CA 95817, USA
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to the manuscript.
Nutrients 2020, 12(9), 2581;
Received: 6 August 2020 / Revised: 21 August 2020 / Accepted: 21 August 2020 / Published: 25 August 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Nutritional Epidemiology)
Alterations of transition metal levels have been associated with obesity, hepatic steatosis, and metabolic syndrome in humans. Studies in animals indicate an association between dietary sugars and copper metabolism. Our group has conducted a study in which young adults consumed beverages sweetened with glucose, fructose, high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), or aspartame for two weeks and has reported that consumption of both fructose- and HFCS-sweetened beverages increased cardiovascular disease risk factors. Baseline and intervention serum samples from 107 participants of this study were measured for copper metabolism (copper, ceruloplasmin ferroxidase activity, ceruloplasmin protein), zinc levels, and iron metabolism (iron, ferritin, and transferrin) parameters. Fructose and/or glucose consumption were associated with decreased ceruloplasmin ferroxidase activity and serum copper and zinc concentrations. Ceruloplasmin protein levels did not change in response to intervention. The changes in copper concentrations were correlated with zinc, but not with iron. The decreases in copper, ceruloplasmin ferroxidase activity, ferritin, and transferrin were inversely associated with the increases in metabolic risk factors associated with sugar consumption, specifically, apolipoprotein CIII, triglycerides, or post-meal glucose, insulin, and lactate responses. These findings are the first evidence that consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages can alter clinical parameters of transition metal metabolism in healthy subjects. View Full-Text
Keywords: copper; ceruloplasmin; ferroxidase; sugar beverages; metabolism; lipid copper; ceruloplasmin; ferroxidase; sugar beverages; metabolism; lipid
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Harder, N.H.O.; Hieronimus, B.; Stanhope, K.L.; Shibata, N.M.; Lee, V.; Nunez, M.V.; Keim, N.L.; Bremer, A.; Havel, P.J.; Heffern, M.C.; Medici, V. Effects of Dietary Glucose and Fructose on Copper, Iron, and Zinc Metabolism Parameters in Humans. Nutrients 2020, 12, 2581.

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