Publications & Reports

Soluble CD163, a product of monocyte/macrophage activation, is inversely associated with haemoglobin levels in placental malaria.

Caroline Lin Lin Chua, Graham V Brown, John A Hamilton, Malcolm E Molyneux, Stephen J Rogerson, Philippe Boeuf
Department of Medicine-Royal Melbourne Hospital, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia.


In Plasmodium falciparum malaria, activation of monocytes and macrophages (monocytes/macrophages) can result in the production of various inflammatory mediators that contribute to immunopathology. Soluble CD163 (sCD163) is a specific marker of monocyte/macrophage activation typically found at increased levels during various inflammatory conditions and can be associated with poor clinical outcomes. To better understand the relationships between levels of sCD163 and clinical parameters in women with placental malaria, we measured plasma sCD163 levels in maternal peripheral and placental blood compartments at delivery and determined their correlations with birth weight and maternal haemoglobin concentrations. sCD163 levels were negatively correlated with birth weight only in the placental compartment (r = -0.145, p = 0.03) and were inversely correlated with maternal haemoglobin concentrations, both in peripheral blood (r = -0.238, p = 0.0004) and in placental blood (r = -0.259, p = 0.0001). These inverse relationships suggest a potential role for monocyte/macrophage activation in the pathogenesis of malaria in pregnancy, particularly in relation to malaria-associated anaemia.


  • Journal: PloS One
  • Published: 22/05/2013
  • Volume: 8
  • Issue: 5
  • Pagination: e64127


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