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Br J Haematol. 1999 Sep;106(4):884-8.

Age-related changes in thrombopoietin in children: reference interval for serum thrombopoietin levels.

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Department of Paediatrics, Mizonokuchi Hospital, Teikyo University School of Medicine, Kawasaki, Japan.


We studied thrombopoietin (TPO, Mpl ligand) values using a sensitive ELISA in 254 serum samples obtained from disease-free children and adult volunteers. TPO was detected in all samples, and its values ranged widely from 0.25 to 9.18 fmol/ml. When analysed by dividing the subjects into 11 age groups, the mean TPO levels from birth to 1 month of age were increased (3.73-5.92 fmol/ml). The highest values were found 2 d after birth; TPO levels then gradually decreased to adult levels (0.83 fmol/ml). The relationship between TPO values and platelet counts was not significant in all subjects (r = 0.27) or in children alone (r = 0.12). In children > 1 month of age a 95% reference interval for serum TPO values was determined from 0.58 to 3.27 fmol/ml. A significant correlation was found between TPO values in serum and plasma; serum TPO values = -0.257 + 4.039 x plasma TPO values (r = 0.951, P < 0.001, n = 22). This study is the first to report age-dependent changes in blood TPO levels throughout child development. Serum TPO values were significantly high up to 1 month of age and were correlated with plasma TPO levels.

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