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Faecal elastase 1: A marker of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency in cystic fibrosis

Faecal elastase 1: A marker of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency in cystic fibrosis
Faecal elastase 1: A marker of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency in cystic fibrosis

Pancreatic elastase 1 (E1), a digestive protease, is synthesized by the acinar cells of the pancreas. Using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, we evaluated stool E1 levels in the following groups of patients: (a) Specimens submitted for occult blood examination from 20 adults, over 3 consecutive days, to assess the inter-day variability in E1 excretion. There were no symptoms suggestive of pancreatic insufficiency in this group. The mean E1 concentration over all samples was 457 μg E1/g stool (range 124-1683). The intra-assay variation was 6.4% (n = 14) and the inter-assay variation was 8.8% (n = 12). The mean intra-patient variation was 17%. (b) Cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. Eight patients had E1 levels in the reference range (> 200 μg E1/g stool). The remaining 25 patients had undetectable E1 levels. (c) A control group of children presenting with unexplained bronchiectasis and/or recurrent respiratory infections and no symptoms of pancreatic dysfunction. The mean E1 concentration in the group was 519 μg E1/g stool (range 139-1941). There was no significant difference in E1 concentrations between the two non-CF groups, nor between the pancreatic-sufficient CF patients when compared with both non-CF groups. There was a significant difference between the pancreatic-sufficient and insufficient CF groups (P < 0.001 ) using the Mann-Whitney U test. All fifteen CF patients who were ΔF508 homozygotes had undetectable E1. It may be possible to relate CF genotype to the presence or absence of E1 and to the degree of pancreatic insufficiency. Measurement of faecal E1 in children with CF appears to differentiate them into a group of children with normal pancreatic function and a larger group with severe insufficiency.

Pancreas, Proteases
0004-5632
739-742
Phillips, Ian J.
557e7ca3-2cd1-46ad-94b7-86c3427f62a2
Rowe, D.J.
3c8361e6-7173-455b-b40f-7ee9638b97e8
Dewar, P.
9e796f44-c3ee-4de3-8d16-ba5f48c36f60
Connett, G.J.
55d5676c-90d8-46bf-a508-62eded276516
Phillips, Ian J.
557e7ca3-2cd1-46ad-94b7-86c3427f62a2
Rowe, D.J.
3c8361e6-7173-455b-b40f-7ee9638b97e8
Dewar, P.
9e796f44-c3ee-4de3-8d16-ba5f48c36f60
Connett, G.J.
55d5676c-90d8-46bf-a508-62eded276516

Phillips, Ian J., Rowe, D.J., Dewar, P. and Connett, G.J. (1999) Faecal elastase 1: A marker of exocrine pancreatic insufficiency in cystic fibrosis. Annals of Clinical Biochemistry, 36 (6), 739-742. (doi:10.1177/000456329903600606).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Pancreatic elastase 1 (E1), a digestive protease, is synthesized by the acinar cells of the pancreas. Using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, we evaluated stool E1 levels in the following groups of patients: (a) Specimens submitted for occult blood examination from 20 adults, over 3 consecutive days, to assess the inter-day variability in E1 excretion. There were no symptoms suggestive of pancreatic insufficiency in this group. The mean E1 concentration over all samples was 457 μg E1/g stool (range 124-1683). The intra-assay variation was 6.4% (n = 14) and the inter-assay variation was 8.8% (n = 12). The mean intra-patient variation was 17%. (b) Cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. Eight patients had E1 levels in the reference range (> 200 μg E1/g stool). The remaining 25 patients had undetectable E1 levels. (c) A control group of children presenting with unexplained bronchiectasis and/or recurrent respiratory infections and no symptoms of pancreatic dysfunction. The mean E1 concentration in the group was 519 μg E1/g stool (range 139-1941). There was no significant difference in E1 concentrations between the two non-CF groups, nor between the pancreatic-sufficient CF patients when compared with both non-CF groups. There was a significant difference between the pancreatic-sufficient and insufficient CF groups (P < 0.001 ) using the Mann-Whitney U test. All fifteen CF patients who were ΔF508 homozygotes had undetectable E1. It may be possible to relate CF genotype to the presence or absence of E1 and to the degree of pancreatic insufficiency. Measurement of faecal E1 in children with CF appears to differentiate them into a group of children with normal pancreatic function and a larger group with severe insufficiency.

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Published date: November 1999
Keywords: Pancreas, Proteases

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 419560
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/419560
ISSN: 0004-5632
PURE UUID: 5257a102-9773-4f07-8ff2-8b5a79a0daf2
ORCID for G.J. Connett: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-1310-3239

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Date deposited: 13 Apr 2018 16:30
Last modified: 07 Oct 2020 02:20

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Contributors

Author: Ian J. Phillips
Author: D.J. Rowe
Author: P. Dewar
Author: G.J. Connett ORCID iD

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