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J Inflamm (Lond). 2013 Oct 7;10(1):31. doi: 10.1186/1476-9255-10-31.

Low Serum retinol-binding protein-4 levels in acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease at intensive care unit admission is a predictor of mortality in elderly patients.

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1
Department of Emergency Medicine, Editorial Board of the Chinese Journal of Emergency Medicine, The Second affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. hexiaojun_hz@163.com.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Acute exacerbations of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (AECOPD) are thought to be associated with increased mortality in elderly patients. Low retinol-binding protein-4 (RBP4) is associated with a high risk of respiratory infections in the general population. Therefore, we hypothesized that low RBP4 levels are associated with an increased risk of AECOPD and can be used as a biomarker for AECOPD in elderly patients.

METHODS:

Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays were used to assess RBP4 levels in elderly with AECOPD within the first 24 hours after intensive care unit admission. Forty-six elderly patients with stable COPD in outpatient clinics and 50 healthy elderly persons who had physical examinations as outpatients were controls.

RESULTS:

In AECOPD patients, RBP4 levels were lower than those in stable COPD patients and healthy controls (59.7 vs 91.2 and 113.6 mg/L, p < 0.001). RBP4 levels were decreased by 30.6% in non-survivors compared with survivors (51.5 vs 74.2 mg/L, p < 0.001). A higher Acute Physiology and Chronic Health Enquiry II (APACHE II) score and Simplified Acute Physiology score (SAPS II) were associated with lower RBP4 levels (r = -0.692, p = 0.024 and r = -0.670, p = 0.015, respectively). RBP4 was positively correlated with creatinine and body mass index, and negatively correlated with C-reactive protein and Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease stage. Multivariate logistic regression showed that RBP4 was an independent mortality predictor of AECOPD (odds ratio: 0.926, p = 0.007). Analysis of the area under the receiver operating characteristic (AUC) curve showed that RBP4 showed good discrimination (AUC: 0.88; 95% confidence interval: 0.78-0.94; p = 0.008) in predicting mortality. RBP4 improved the prognostic accuracy of mortality for the APACHE II and SAPS II scores.

CONCLUSIONS:

Serum RBP4 levels are significantly reduced in elderly AECOPD patients. RBP4 might be a good predictive biomarker for mortality in elderly AECOPD patients in the intensive care unit.

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