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Blood Test for Calprotectin Could Predict Which COVID-19 Patients Are at Risk of Decline

By HospiMedica International staff writers
Posted on 15 Dec 2020
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Two different research teams have shown that a blood test for calprotectin could predict which COVID-19 patients are at risk of decline, enabling hospitals to better allocate essential resources.

The findings of the test that could predict COVID-19 severity were presented at the virtual 2020 AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo. Using this test, the first team from Karolinska Institute (Solna, Sweden) and Gentian Diagnostics (Stockholm, Sweden) found that ICU patients with COVID-19 had significantly higher calprotectin levels compared with ICU patients without COVID-19. The second team, led Hospital Universitario Santa Lucía (Cartagena, Spain), then found that calprotectin levels were significantly higher in COVID-19 patients who required mechanical ventilation and/or died compared with other non-severe COVID-19 patients.

The second team also compared the calprotectin test's performance with that of other tests for COVID-19 severity that are currently in use. Out of the other tests they studied, they found that a test for C-reactive protein (CRP) was the only one that predicted both patient need for mechanical ventilation and mortality as accurately as calprotectin.

"The important difference between CRP and calprotectin is that calprotectin is a much faster biomarker for inflammation and infection, and an earlier indicator that a patient is getting worse," said Aleksandra Mandic Havelka, PhD, from Karolinska Institute, who also worked on the second study. "This means that calprotectin is better suited for making urgent decisions about which COVID-19 patients need to be prioritized and treated with the optimal level of care."

Related Links:
Karolinska Institute
Gentian Diagnostics


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