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Increased plasma levels of heparin-binding protein in patients with shock: a prospective, cohort study

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Heparin-binding protein (HBP) is a potent inducer of increased vascular permeability. The purpose of this study was to examine plasma levels of HBP in patients with shock.


Fifty-three consecutive patients with septic and non-septic shock at a mixed-bed intensive care unit were included, as well as 20 age-matched controls. Patients with local infections but without signs of shock served as infectious controls. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay was used to determine plasma levels of HBP.


There were no differences in serum HBP levels between healthy controls and those with local infections, including urinary tract infections, pneumonia and gastroenteritis, without shock. Levels of HBP were higher in patients with non-septic shock and septic shock than healthy controls. However, there was no difference in serum HBP levels between patients with septic shock and those with non-septic shock. Moreover, HBP levels were not different between patients with low and high APACHE II scores. Plasma levels of HBP were similar in surviving and non-surviving patients with shock.


HBP is elevated in patients with shock from septic and non-septic etiologies. Future investigations are required to define the functional role of HBP in patients with shock.

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This work was supported by grants from the Swedish Medical Research Council (2007-7480 and 2009-4872), Crafoord foundation, Einar and Inga Nilsson foundation, Harald and Greta Jaensson foundation, Greta and Johan Kock foundation, Fröken Agnes Nilsson foundation, Franke and Margareta Bergqvist foundation, Magnus Bergvall foundation, Mossfelt foundation, Nanna Svartz foundation, Ruth and Richard Julin foundation, Svenska Läkaresällskapet, MAS foundations, Scandinavian Society for Anesthesiology and Intensive Care Acta Foundation, Malmö University Hospital and Lund University. None of these funding bodies were involved in the study design, data collection, analysis, manuscript preparation or submission. We thank Monica Heidenholm for excellent technical assistance.

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The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

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Correspondence to Henrik Thorlacius.

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Responsible Editor: Artur Bauhofer.

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Chew, M.S., Linder, A., Santen, S. et al. Increased plasma levels of heparin-binding protein in patients with shock: a prospective, cohort study. Inflamm. Res. 61, 375–379 (2012).

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