Reagent is used as a turbidimetric immunoassay for the quantitative in vitro
determination of ferritin
in human serum and plasma.
The protein ferritin is the most important iron store in the human body, and its normal values vary greatly according to age and sex. Plasma ferritin shows a direct and quantitative correlation with mobilizable storage iron in healthy individuals and in patients with iron deficiency or iron overload.
In its function as an acute-phase protein, increased concentrations of ferritin can be detected in the context of inflammatory and necrotic processes, such as hepatitis or myocardial infarction. Serum ferritin concentration is pathologically elevated in a number of solid tumors (hepatomas, pancreatic carcinomas, bronchial carcinomas, neuroblastomas) and in lymphomas and leukoses and correlates with tumor activity and spread. However, with regard to desirable tumor specificity, clinical data to date are controversial.
Since ferritin can also be present in very high concentrations during inflammation caused, for example, by acute, chronic diseases or infections, a high ferritin concentration is possible although iron deficiency is present. In this case, determination of the inflammatory marker C-reactive protein (CRP) or the iron transport molecule transferrin may be useful to rule out misinterpretation of the measurement results due to high serum levels of ferritin.
Low ferritin levels are indicative of:
– Diseases that prevent iron absorption (sprue, Crohn’s disease).
– malnutrition (e.g. alcoholism or vegan diet)
– Malabsorption syndrome
– Increased iron requirement (e.g. during pregnancy, lactation and growth phase)
– Iron loss (e.g. menstrual bleeding, bleeding due to gastric ulcer)
– Transferrin deficiency (e.g. in certain kidney diseases)
Elevated ferritin levels occur in:
– Hemochromatosis (iron storage disease).
– iron overload
– Iron distribution disorders (e.g. due to hepatitis, infections, tumors, uremia, liver damage, hemolysis)
– Iron utilization disorders (e.g. due to anemia, folic acid or vitamin B21 deficiency, hemoglobinopathies)
– Overdoses of iron supplements
– Frequent blood transfusions