Proteins, acute-phase
Proteins whose plasma concentrations increase (or decrease) by 25% or more during certain inflammatory disorders. C-reactive protein (CRP) is perhaps the best known of acute-phase proteins. CRP is a plasma protein that rises in the blood with the inflammation from certain conditions. The level of CRP in blood plasma can rise as high as 1000-fold with inflammation. Conditions that commonly lead to marked changes in CRP include infection, trauma, surgery, burns, inflammatory conditions, and advanced cancer. Moderate changes occur after strenuous exercise, heatstroke, and childbirth. Small changes occur after psychological stress and in several psychiatric illnesses. C-reactive protein is therefore a test of value. Rises in CRP reflect the presence and intensity of inflammation. An elevation in C-reactive protein, however, is not a telltale sign pointing to just one disease.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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