What Happened to Eosinophilic Cationic Protein: A Dead End
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Eosinophil cationic protein (ECP) is a single cationic polypeptide chain consisting of 133 amino acids. ECP is a mediator in host immune response to parasites, bacteria and viruses. Much of the literature on this protein focuses on its role in eosinophil-related disorders like asthma. ECP correlates with airway inflammation but not airway hyper-responsiveness. It is not diagnostic of asthma but is related to severity and can be used to monitor effects of asthma treatment [1, 2]. Concentrations of ECP correlate with the clinical severity of chronic allergic conjunctival disease . Although present in numerous biological fluids, sample management is complex and serum has become the main avenue of determination used in the laboratory setting. The ECP molecule participates in a large number of biological reactions, which makes it an unacceptable diagnostic marker due to low diagnostic specificity .
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