PRODUCTS - Inflammatory series- Procalcitonin(PCT)


PCT is a kind of protein. Its level in plasma increases when severe bacterial, fungal, parasitic infections, sepsis and multiple organ failure occur. PCT will not rise in autoimmunity, allergy and viral infection. Local limited bacterial infection, mild infection and chronic inflammation will not lead to its elevation. Bacterial endotoxin plays a crucial role in the induction process.

PCT reflects the activity of systemic inflammatory response. The factors affecting the level of PCT include the size and type of infected organs, the species of bacteria, the degree of inflammation and the status of immune response. In addition, PCT can be measured only 1~4d after major surgery in a few patients.

The increase of PCT level occurs in severe shock, systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) and multiple organ dysfunction syndrome (MODS), even without bacterial infection or bacterial lesions. However, PCT levels are generally lower in these cases than in those with bacterial lesions. Cytokine release from the gut or bacterial translocation may cause induction.


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