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Blood biochemistry: C-reactive protein

ISSN 2398-2969

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Synonym(s): CRP

Overview

  • C-reactive protein (CRP) is a positive acute phase protein released as part of the acute phase response following tissue injury.
  • The acute phase response is highly non-specific but helps to limit tissue damage and promote healing following trauma, infection or inflammation.
  •  The concentration of CRP increases dramatically within 24 h of inflammation or tissue damage.
  • The magnitude of the increase reflects the intensity of the inflammation.
  • CRP decreases rapidly again following successful management of the underlying inflammatory process.

Uses

Alone

  • CRP is non-specific and will be increased in a wide variety of disease processes. An increase in CRP does provide evidence of an inflammatory process, but cannot be used to determine a specific cause.

In combination

  • To confirm or exclude the presence of inflammation associated with various disease processes.
Treatment monitoring
  • Sequential CRP measurements can be used to help evaluate response to therapy.
  • This may be one of the most useful practical applications of CRP.

Sampling

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Tests

Methodologies

  • Immunoturbidimetric.

Availability

  • Check with laboratory.

Validity

Specificity

  • Test is poorly specific - acute phase proteins raised in any inflammatory disease and not specific for any one condition.

Technique intrinsic limitations

  • Usually must be interpreted in conjunction with other laboratory and clinical findings to reach a diagnosis.

Result Data

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Cray C et al (2015) Utility of IgM titers with IgG and C-reactive protein quantitation in the diagnosis of suspected Encephalitozoon cuniculi infection in rabbits. J Exot Pet Med 24 (3), 356-360 VetMedResource.
  • Cray C (2013) Biomarkers of inflammation in exotic pets. J Exot Pet Med 22 (3), 245-250 VetMedResource.
  • Cray C, Rodriguez M & Fernandez Y (2013) Acute phase protein levels in rabbits with suspected Encephalitozoon cuniculi infection. J Exotic Pet Med 22 (3), 280-286 VetMedResource.