Scoliosis in chickens: responsiveness of severity and incidence to dietary copper

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  27 Jul 1984:
Vol. 225, Issue 4660, pp. 440-442
DOI: 10.1126/science.6740317


The severity and incidence of spinal lesions were manipulated in a line of chickens susceptible to scoliosis by varying their dietary intake of copper. A decrease in expression of the lesion was related to increased intake of copper. The change in expression, however, appeared to be related only indirectly to the defects in collagen cross-linking, maturation, and deposition known to be associated with dietary copper deficiency. Thus, a dietary constituent in the range of normal intakes may act as an environmental factor in the expression of scoliosis.