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Arch Dis Child. 1997 Aug;77(2):155-7.

Serum prolactin in coeliac disease: a marker for disease activity.

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School of Nutritional Sciences, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot.


Prolactin, a polypeptide hormone of anterior pituitary origin, has pronounced physiological effects on growth, reproduction, and osmoregulation. Increasing evidence indicates that prolactin also has an immunomodulatory influence on the immune system. The status of prolactin in patients with coeliac disease was investigated by obtaining serum samples from 48 patients with active and non-active coeliac disease. These were compared with samples from 20 children with familial Mediterranean fever and 65 normal controls. Serum prolactin in patients with active coeliac disease was significantly higher than in the other groups studied and reference values. Serum prolactin correlated well with the degree of mucosal atrophy and with the serum concentration of antiendomysial antibodies. Prolactin may play a part in immune modulation in the intestinal damage of coeliac disease and serve as a potential marker for disease activity.

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