Fecal biomarkers in inflammatory bowel disease

Literature buzz Diagnostics

Calprotectin, Calgranulin C and Lactoferrin: the winning trio for IBDE

Expert opinion

Are you looking for fecal biomarkers to diagnose and assess of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)? A comprehensive and state-of-the art review of the most trusted options is provided in this interesting article by Robert Lopez from University of Otago (New Zealand).
Gold standard tests such as radiological investigation, ileocolonoscopy, and mucosal biopsies present many disadvantages and are not always well tolerated by patients, especially when tests need to be repeated as the disease progresses. So why not use surrogate markers instead?
For that, you need to be sure that the ideal fecal biomarkers meet several criteria. They should be highly sensitive and reflect changes in inflammation anywhere along the gastrointestinal tract during therapy to reflect disease progression or relapse. The ideal fecal biomarkers should also be routinely measured in clinical trials.
Several biomarkers have been evaluated over the past 20 years as potential non-invasive indicators of inflammation in gastrointestinal diseases. Each biomarker has its pros and cons, as always in clinical biology. Combing quantifications for different biomarkers, each one bringing its own information, is often the best approach for optimal clinical IBD evaluation and management.
This review provides details about the three most-trusted fecal biomarkers you could use to monitor inflammatory stages and progression: Calprotectin, Calgranulin C (or S100A12) and Lactoferrin.
Learn more by reading this article, and become a researcher at the cutting edge of in-vitro fecal biomarker quantification.


Over the last two decades, knowledge on fecal biomarkers has substantially increased. Nowadays, these non-invasive markers of inflammation have significant clinical utility in the management of inflammatory bowel disease. Their use informs the decision to perform endoscopy before diagnosis is made right through to influencing therapeutic choices and the need for interval endoscopic assessment. In this review, the roles of two S100 proteins, calprotectin, and S100A12 are described along with that of lactoferrin, in the context of inflammatory bowel disease.


J. Gastroenterol. Hepatol. 2017 Mar;32(3):577-582.I

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