C-reactive proteins: Should everyone be tested?

(Philadelphia, PA) -- In the last year, a number of studies have focused on the C-reactive protein (CRP) inflammatory risk factor for heart disease. Using high-sensitivity assays (hsCRP), we are able to measure CRP at lower levels than previously possible. These low levels of CRP (hsCRP) are related to chronic, low grade inflammation, which is associated with heart disease. Many of these studies reported on the relationship of hsCRP to first myocardial or anginal attack, recurrence of coronary heart disease incidents, and increased prognosis of heart disease when elevated hsCRP exists with other risk factors. Other published materials have focused on the laboratory methods used for identifying hsCRP, and have expressed concern about results that stem from using different test methods to identify hsCRP. A Cardiac Risk Survey released earlier this year by the College of American Pathologists (CAP) underscored the need for standardizing the results of five different classes used by labs to identify hsCRP. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued recommendations to address these concerns.

Presentation at the 55th Annual AACC Meeting

How important is hsCRP as an indicator of cardiovascular disease? What is the role of laboratories and are readings affected by different laboratory methods and a lack of standardization? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has examined these questions and developed recommendations for the public and leaders of the nation's clinical laboratories.

These recommendations will be discussed by Gerald R. Cooper, MD, PhD, of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA. Dr. Cooper will deliver his remarks entitled, "C-Reactive Protein: A New Inflammatory Risk Factor for Cardiovascular Disease," during the 55th Annual Meeting of the American Association of Clinical Chemistry (AACC) being held July 20-24, 2003 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center, Philadelphia

Contact: Donna Krupa
American Association for Clinical Chemistry

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