Author(s): Trivedy CR, Warnakulasuriya KA, Peters TJ, Senkus R, Hazarey VK,
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Oral submucous fibrosis (OSF) is a well-recognised-potentially malignant condition of the oral cavity associated with areca nut chewing. Areca nut has been shown to have a high copper content compared to other commonly eaten nuts, and chewing areca nut for 5-30 min significantly increases soluble copper in whole mouth fluids. Our aims were to determine if tissue and serum concentrations of copper were raised in patients with OSF as a result of chewing areca nut. A panel of buccal mucosal biopsies from patients with OSF from Nagpur, India, was used to measure the tissue concentrations of copper by mass absorption spectrometry (MAS). By MAS, the mean tissue copper level was 5.5+/-2.9 microg/g in the OSF specimens (n=11) compared with 4+/-1.9 microg/g in the non-areca chewing controls (n=7) (P=0.2). Energy dispersive x-ray microanalysis (EDX) was used to identify the presence and distribution of the metal element. EDX showed distinct peaks corresponding to copper (Kalpha 8.04 keV; Kbeta, 8.91 keV) in the epithelium (21/23) and in the connective tissue (17/23) of the OSF specimens compared to spectra obtained from control oral biopsies from non-areca chewing subjects (n=7). These findings were confirmed by secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS) analysis in a small number of samples. Serum copper (17.23+/-1.80 pmol/l), caeruloplasmin (0.32+/-0.04 g/l) levels and urinary copper (0.52+/-0.26 micromol/l) in OSF patients (n=14) were within the laboratory reference ranges. The finding of copper in OSF tissue supports the hypothesis of copper as an initiating factor in OSF, playing a role in stimulating fibrogenesis by the upregulation of lysyl oxidase activity.
This article was published in J Oral Pathol Med
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy