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Clin Chim Acta. 1995 Jul 31;239(1):57-63.

Sensitivity and specificity of a new ELISA method for determination of chromogranin A in the diagnosis of pheochromocytoma and neuroblastoma.

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Department of Internal Medicine I, University Hospital Dijkzigt/Erasmus University, Rotterdam, The Netherlands.


We have evaluated a new commercially available ELISA kit for determination of plasma chromogranin A with respect to its usefulness in the diagnosis of neuroendocrine tumors, mainly pheochromocytoma. Serum and differently anticoagulated plasmas gave different chromogranin A concentrations. Control values (n = 21) were 18.9 +/- 5.8 units/l. Chromogranin A values > 30.4 units/l (mean + 2 S.D.) were considered elevated. In 22 patients suspected of (but found not to have) pheochromocytoma and in 24 patients with renovascular hypertension, 18% were found to have elevated chromogranin A concentrations. In renovascular hypertension chromogranin A correlated positively with serum creatinine; chromogranin A was strongly elevated especially in chronic renal failure. In 45 patients with pheochromocytoma, 13 (29%) had chromogranin A concentrations within the normal range, as had 3 out of 11 patients with neuroblastoma (27%). In 13 pheochromocytoma patients with elevated chromogranin A, measurements were repeated after surgical removal of the tumor; values then all fell within the normal range. We conclude that measurement of chromogranin A adds little to already existing methods for the diagnosis of pheochromocytoma.

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