(Science: protein) this blood test is used as an indicator of acute inflammation. C-reactive protein is a protein of the pentraxin family, produced by the liver during periods of inflammation and detectable in serum in various disease conditions particularly during the acute phase of immune response. Normally c-reactive protein should be negative in the bloodstream.
c-reactive protein is synthesised by hepatocytes and its production may be triggered by prostaglandin e1 or parogen. It consists of five polypeptide sub units forming a molecule of total molecular weight 105 kd. It binds to polysaccharides present in a wide range of bacterial, fungal and other cell walls or cell surfaces and to lecithin and to phosphoryl or choline containing molecules. It is related in structure to serum amyloid. And c polysaccharide.
conditions which can cause a positive c-reactive protein include: rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, pneumococcal pneumonia, rheumatic fever, cancer, tuberculosis and myocardial infarction.
a positive c-reactive protein may also be seen in the later half of pregnancy and in some who are taking birth control pills.
See: acute phase proteins