Approximately 1,000 million infections with dengue viruses are estimated to occur annually. The majority of the cases develop mild disease, whereas only small proportion of the infected individuals develop severe hemorrhagic manifestations at the end of the acute phase of illness. In this study, the value of plasma levels of vascular cell adhesion molecule 1 (VCAM-1) in the pathogenesis and prognosis of dengue illness was investigated in children with dengue infections of varying severity. The plasma levels of soluble VCAM-1 (sVCAM-1) were measured in serial plasma samples obtained from 168 children aged between 7 months and 14 years with confirmed dengue infection. Of those children, 71 were suffering from dengue fever, 30 were suffering from dengue hemorrhagic fever, and 67 were suffering from dengue shock syndrome. Plasma samples obtained from 21 patients with febrile illness other than dengue served as controls. A commercially available kit (R&D Systems, Oxon, UK) was used to measure the levels of sVCAM-1 in plasma samples. sVCAM-1 was elevated during acute dengue infection, and significantly elevated among dengue shock syndrome patients as compared to dengue fever or dengue hemorrhagic fever patients (P<0.05). Statistical analysis revealed that sVCAM-1 was associated with dengue disease severity and the time post infection (acute vs. convalescent phase) and not with age, sex, or previous exposure of the patients to dengue infection. A significant difference was found in the plasma levels of sVCAM-1 between dengue shock syndrome and dengue fever patients, however, the prognostic value of this marker in the acute stage of dengue illness proved to be limited. These data also favor to study the further elucidation of the role of sVCAM-1 in the pathogenesis of dengue infections.

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Journal of Medical Virology
Department of Virology

Koraka, P, Murgue, B, Deparis, X, van Gorp, E.C.M, Setiati, T.E, Osterhaus, A.D.M.E, & Groen, J.M. (2004). Elevation of Soluble VCAM-1 Plasma Levels in Children with Acute Dengue Virus Infection of Varying Severity. Journal of Medical Virology, 72(3), 445–450. doi:10.1002/jmv.20007