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Cerebrospinal fluid and serum biomarkers of cerebral malaria mortality in Ghanaian children

DOI: 10.1186/1475-2875-6-147

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Postmortem serum and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples were obtained within 2–4 hours of death in Ghanaian children dying of CM, severe malarial anemia (SMA), and non-malarial (NM) causes. Serum and CSF levels of 36 different biomarkers (IL-1β, IL-1ra, IL-2, IL-4, IL-5, IL-6, IL-7, IL-8, IL-9, IL-10, IL-12 (p70), IL-13, IL-15, IL-17, Eotaxin, FGF basic protein, CRP, G-CSF, GM-CSF, IFN-γ, TNF-α, IP-10, MCP-1 (MCAF), MIP-1α, MIP-1β, RANTES, SDF-1α, CXCL11 (I-TAC), Fas-ligand [Fas-L], soluble Fas [sFas], sTNF-R1 (p55), sTNF-R2 (p75), MMP-9, TGF-β1, PDGF bb and VEGF) were measured and the results compared between the 3 groups.After Bonferroni adjustment for other biomarkers, IP-10 was the only serum biomarker independently associated with CM mortality when compared to SMA and NM deaths. Eight CSF biomarkers (IL-1ra, IL-8, IP-10, PDGFbb, MIP-1β, Fas-L, sTNF-R1, and sTNF-R2) were significantly elevated in CM mortality group when compared to SMA and NM deaths. Additionally, CSF IP-10/PDGFbb median ratio was statistically significantly higher in the CM group compared to SMA and NM groups.The parasite-induced local cerebral dysregulation in the production of IP-10, 1L-8, MIP-1β, PDGFbb, IL-1ra, Fas-L, sTNF-R1, and sTNF-R2 may be involved in CM neuropathology, and their immunoassay may have potential utility in predicting mortality in CM.Malaria is an important neglected disease and one of the most important global health problems, potentially affecting more than one third of the world's population. Cerebral malaria (CM) is a deadly complication of Plasmodium falciparum infection, associated with a 10–14% mortality rate and approximately 1–2 million annual deaths among young children predominantly in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia, yet its pathogenesis remains incompletely understood. In Ghana, malaria has a wide spectrum of presentations: from asymptomatic carriers to mild malaria to multifactorial severe disease, including CM and severe malarial anemia (SMA) [1-5].CM


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