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[A novel marker of development of HUS associated with enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli infection--thrombomodulin levels in the blood].

Vero toxins-mediated vascular endothelial cell damage is thought to play a central and important role in the pathogenesis of HUS associated with EHEC infection. Thrombomodulin (TM) is an endothelial membrane protein inhibiting procoagulant activities of thrombin. Elevation of soluble TM in the blood is regarded a possible marker for endothelial cell damage. To test whether serum TM acts as an indicator for HUS, we evaluated serum TM in 21 children with HUS, 31 children with hemorrhagic colitis(HC), and 25 healthy age-matched controls. TM levels in acute HUS patients (6.89 +/- 1.91 ng/ml) were significantly higher when compared with in acute HC patients(3.15 +/- 0.37 ng/ml) and in the controls (2.77 +/- 0.42 ng/ml) (p < 0.001, respectively). This result indicated that serum TM may be an useful marker for the development of HUS.

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