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Abstract

Bariatric surgery is a popular and effective treatment for obesity. However, an unfavorable consequence for patients who have had bariatric surgery is copper (Cu) deficiency. Current screening methods used for Cu deficiency are neither sensitive nor specifi c enough to diagnose Cu deficiency or detect changes in Cu status. The purpose of this research is to determine if concentrations of copper chaperone for superoxide dismutase (CCS) in erythrocytes are associated with serum Cu concentrations in bariatric surgery patients, by assessing whether changes in CCS concentrations can be observed in response to altering Cu status when patients are supplemented with Cu (8 mg/day) or iron (Fe) (195 mg/day) for 8 weeks. Blood samples were obtained from subjects who had undergone bariatric surgery and serum Cu concentrations were measured. Concentrations of CCS in erythrocytes were measured using Western blotting. CCS and serum Cu were not significantly correlated (p > 0.05), though there were significant increases in CCS for patients supplemented with Fe (p < 0.05). This indicates that CCS increases as a result of Fe supplementation. Because serum Cu and erythrocyte CCS were not significantly correlated, it is unclear if CCS is representative of Cu status. Future research should focus on improving the reliability of the methods and increasing the sample size.

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