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Biochem Soc Trans. 2020 Feb 12. pii: BST20190029. doi: 10.1042/BST20190029. [Epub ahead of print]

Biomarkers of inflammation and the etiology of sepsis.

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Department of Internal Medicine and Radboud Center for Infectious Diseases, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands.
Human Genomics Laboratory, University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Craiova, Craiova, Romania.
Department for Genomics & Immunoregulation, Life and Medical Sciences Institute (LIMES), University of Bonn, Bonn, Germany.


Sepsis is characterized as a life-threatening organ dysfunction syndrome that is caused by a dysregulated host response to infection. The main etiological causes of sepsis are bacterial, fungal, and viral infections. Last decades clinical and preclinical research contributed to a better understanding of pathophysiology of sepsis. The dysregulated host response in sepsis is complex, with both pathogen-related factors contributing to disease, as well as immune-cell mediated inflammatory responses that can lead to adverse outcomes in early or advanced stages of disease. Due to its heterogenous nature, clinical diagnosis remains challenging and sepsis-specific treatment options are still lacking. Classification and early identification of patient subgroups may aid clinical decisions and improve outcome in sepsis patients. The initial clinical presentation is rather similar in sepsis of different etiologies, however, inflammatory profiles may be able to distinguish between different etiologies of infections. In this review, we summarize the role and the discriminating potency of host-derived inflammatory biomarkers in the context of the main etiological types of sepsis.


biomarker; infection; inflammation; pathogen; sepsis


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