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J Perinatol. 2010 Feb;30(2):98-102. doi: 10.1038/jp.2009.120. Epub 2009 Aug 13.

Serum thrombopoietin level and thrombocytopenia during the neonatal period in infants with Down's syndrome.

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Department of Pediatrics, Nishi-Kobe Medical Center, Kobe, Hyogo, Japan.



The pathogenesis of thrombocytopenia during the neonatal period in Down's syndrome (DS) infants remains unclear.


To elucidate kinetic changes of serum thrombopoietin (TPO) level and platelet count, and their correlation in DS neonates.


Twelve DS infants (male/female: 7/5, term/late preterm: 10/2) born between 1997 and 2007 were included. Blood samples were serially collected during the neonatal period and serum TPO levels were determined in 44 sera using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.


Thrombocytopenia <150 x 10(9) per liter was observed in seven (58%) patients. In 12 DS patients, the median TPO value showed 2.86 fmol ml(-1) on day 0, rose to 4.64 fmol ml(-1) on day 2, and thereafter decreased to 4.30 fmol ml(-1) on day 5, 2.40 fmol ml(-1) on days 11-15, and 1.75 fmol ml(-1) on days 28-30. This kinetics parallels that in historical non-DS controls. In 35 pair sample analysis from 11 patients without transient myeloproliferative disease, TPO level inversely correlated with platelet count (r=-0.38, P=0.023). However, there was no significant difference in TPO concentrations between thrombocytopenic and non-thrombocytopenic DS individuals.


This is the first study to describe the relationship between TPO level and platelet count in neonates with DS. Median TPO levels and their kinetic changes in DS neonates are comparable to those in non-DS controls. In contrast to earlier findings in several studies showing higher TPO concentrations in thrombocytopenic non-DS newborns than those in non-thrombocytopenic counterparts, the response of the TPO system to thrombocytopenia in DS during the neonatal period seems suboptimal.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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