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Blood. 2002 Jan 1;99(1):378-80.

Identification of the hemoglobin scavenger receptor/CD163 as a natural soluble protein in plasma.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Biochemistry, AAS Aarhus University Hospital, Denmark.


The hemoglobin scavenger receptor (HbSR/CD163) is an interleukin-6- and glucocorticoid-regulated macrophage/monocyte receptor for uptake of haptoglobin-hemoglobin complexes. Moreover, there are strong indications that HbSR serves an anti-inflammatory function. Immunoprecipitation and immunoblotting enabled identification of a soluble plasma form of HbSR (sHbSR) having an electrophoretic mobility equal to that of recombinant HbSR consisting of the extracellular domain (scavenger receptor cysteine-rich 1-9). A sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was established and used to measure the sHbSR level in 130 healthy subjects (median, 1.87 mg/L; range, 0.73-4.69 mg/L). To evaluate the sHbSR levels in conditions with increased leukocyte stimulation and proliferation, 140 patients admitted to a hematological department were screened. Several patients, with a broad spectrum of diagnoses, had a level of sHbSR above the range of healthy persons. Patients with myelomonocytic leukemias and pneumonia/sepsis exhibited the highest levels (up to 67.3 mg/L). In conclusion, sHbSR is an abundant plasma protein potentially valuable in monitoring patients with infections and myelomonocytic leukemia.

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