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Serum amyloid A protein in acute viral infections.
  1. H Miwata,
  2. T Yamada,
  3. M Okada,
  4. T Kudo,
  5. H Kimura,
  6. T Morishima
  1. Department of Paediatrics, Nagoya University School of Medicine, Japan.


    Concentrations of serum amyloid A protein (SAA) were measured in 254 children with viral diseases, including measles, varicella, rubella, mumps, echo-30 meningitis, chronic hepatitis B and C, and in eight with Kawasaki disease. Latex agglutination nephelometric immunoassay was used for assaying SAA. In 191 out of 195 patients (98%), SAA concentrations became markedly raised in the acute phase of the viral disease: measles (97%), varicella (100%), mumps (95%), and echo-30 meningitis (99%) with mean titres of 82.4, 80.5, 60.2, 75.2, and 101.1 micrograms/ml respectively. This increase in SAA was followed by a rapid return to normal concentrations (< 5 micrograms/ml) during convalescence. Remarkably higher concentrations of SAA (mean 1630 micrograms/ml) were detected in the acute phase of patients with Kawasaki disease, but in most of the children with chronic hepatitis B or C, the titres of SAA remained normal. There was no close correlation between SAA and serum concentrations for alpha 1-acid glycoprotein, beta 2-microglobulin, transferrin, and IgG. There was a clear correlation between SAA and C reactive protein concentrations, although SAA showed a greater incremental change than C reactive protein in the acute phase. In the acute phase of these viral diseases, 56% of the patients had raised SAA concentrations (> or = 5 micrograms/ml) with normal C reactive protein concentrations (< 5 micrograms/ml). These results indicate that SAA could be useful as an inflammatory marker in children with acute viral infections.

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