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J Pediatr Neurosci. 2018 Oct-Dec;13(4):416-422. doi: 10.4103/JPN.JPN_15_18.

Plasma and Cerebrospinal Fluid Beta-Endorphin Levels Show a Strong Association in Children with Cerebral Malaria.

Author information

1
Department of Paediatrics and Child Health, Obafemi Awolowo University/Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospitals Complex (OAUTHC), Ile-Ife, Nigeria.
2
Department of Biochemistry, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.

Abstract

Background:

Beta (β)-endorphins are endogenous neuropeptides found in the plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of humans but there have been reports of the relationship between the plasma and CSF β-endorphin levels in different clinical conditions. However, the relationship between β-endorphin levels in the plasma and CSF of children with cerebral malaria (CM) has not been reported.

Aim:

To determine the relationship between β-endorphin levels in the CSF and plasma of children with CM.

Settings and Design:

This cross-sectional study involved 40 children, aged between 6 months and 14 years, admitted with a diagnosis of CM at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospitals Complex (OAUTHC), Ile-Ife, Nigeria.

Materials and Methods:

One milliliter (mL) of venous blood and 1mL of CSF obtained from each subject at admission were used to determine the β-endorphin levels using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) method.

Statistical Analysis:

Bivariate linear regression was used to determine the association between plasma and CSF β-endorphin levels using the correlation coefficient (r), coefficient of determination (R 2), and P values.

Results:

The plasma β-endorphin levels significantly positively correlated with CSF β-endorphin (r = 0.568, P = 0.001) such that for every unit rise in plasma β-endorphin, CSF β-endorphin rose by 0.252 pmol/L (confidence interval: 0.132-0.371 pmol/L).

Conclusion:

The finding of positive correlation between plasma and CSF β-endorphin levels in this study suggests a possible direct link between plasma and CSF in CM, probably from the disruption of the blood-brain barrier that has been reported in CM.

KEYWORDS:

cerebral malaria; cerebrospinal fluid; plasma; β-Endorphin

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