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Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2011 Jan;23(1):76-80. doi: 10.1097/MEG.0b013e32834101f9.

Fecal calprotectin concentrations in alcoholic patients: a longitudinal study.

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Institute of Internal Medicine, Catholic University of Rome, Italy.



Excessive alcohol consumption often results in intestinal damage, mediated by inflammatory processes, mainly characterized by an increased influx of leukocytes. Fecal calprotectin is a granulocyte cytosolic protein, representing as a promising marker of subclinical intestinal inflammation. In this study, we assessed fecal calprotectin concentrations (FCCs) in current drinking alcoholics, both at the baseline, and then during a subsequent 84-day period. Moreover, FCCs in the alcoholics were compared with the FCCs in healthy controls.


Twenty-eight, active-drinking alcoholics were enrolled in this study and compared with 40 healthy volunteers as the control group. In alcoholics, FCCs were determined at the beginning of the study (baseline; T0) and then every 2 weeks (T1-T6) during the following 84-day period. Potential differences in FCCs were analyzed between alcoholics and healthy controls, and during the 84-day period within the group of alcoholics. In addition, an analysis of FCCs was conducted in three subgroups of alcoholics, considering their drinking status during the 84-day period (abstinent, relapsed, and active).


At baseline, no significant differences in median FCCs were found between alcoholics and controls. No significant changes of median FCCs were found, comparing baseline FCCs and FCCs during the 84-day period (T1-T6) in the whole group of alcoholics, nor in the three subgroups of alcoholics.


FCCs in active-drinking alcoholics are not significantly different, compared with the healthy controls. Moreover, FCCs do not significantly differ according to the alcohol drinking status. These results may suggest the absence of a subclinal intestinal inflammation involving neutrophils in the alcoholics.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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