C-reactive protein is one of the most widely used indicators of the response of acute-phase proteins. The measurement of C-reactive protein in dengue, however, is clinically not useful, because of marginally elevated levels and absent association with disease severity. The prototypic long pentraxin, pentraxin 3, is an acute phase protein that is structurally related but distinct from C-reactive protein which has proven to correlate with the severity of bacterial infection in critically ill patients. The potential involvement of pentraxin 3 in dengue and its aptitude to predict more severe disease or poor clinical outcome has not been studied previously. We therefore measured pentraxin 3 plasma levels in 44 dengue virus infected patients. Pentraxin 3 levels were strikingly higher when compared to C-reactive protein levels, with highest pentraxin 3 values observed in the first 7 days after the onset of symptoms. Median pentraxin 3 levels at admission and peak levels during follow up were higher in patients suffering from dengue shock syndrome (at admission: 119.3 ng/ml [interquartile range 61.8-188.7], peak values during follow up: 147.9 ng/ml [interquartile range 85.7-204.3]) compared to levels found in patients with dengue fever and dengue hemorrhagic fever (at admission: 59.0 ng/ml [interquartile range 28.6-100.3], P = 0.040; peak values during follow up: 80.8 ng/ml [interquartile range 36.1-168.1], P= 0.020). Our results indicate that pentraxin 3 seems to be a marker of infection better than C-reactive protein in dengue. The role of pentraxin 3 in the pathogenesis of dengue and its potential as an early prognostic indicator of disease severity needs further assessment.

Acute-phase reaction, C-reactive protein, Dengue hemorrhagic fever, Dengue shock syndrome
dx.doi.org/10.1002/jmv.20397, hdl.handle.net/1765/65059
Journal of Medical Virology
Department of Virology

Mairuhu, A.T.A, Peri, G, Setiati, T.E, Hack, C.E, Koraka, P, Soemantri, A, … van Gorp, E.C.M. (2005). Elevated plasma levels of the long pentraxin, pentraxin 3, in severe dengue virus infections. Journal of Medical Virology, 76(4), 547–552. doi:10.1002/jmv.20397