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RESEARCH ARTICLE
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Serum Angiopoietin-1 and -2 and VEGF are associated with severe disease in vivax malaria


1 Department of Biochemistry, Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi, India
2 Department of Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India
3 Department of Biochemistry, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0972-9062.313969

Background & objectives: Malaria continues to be a significant public health problem in tropical countries including India; however, there are limited tools to predict occurrence of severe disease due to malaria. This study was designed to evaluate the role of Angiopoietin-1 (Ang-1), Angiopoietin-2 (Ang-2), Vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and Asymmetric Dimethylarginine (ADMA)as disease biomarkers in uncomplicated malaria (UM) and severe malaria (SM). Methods: It is a prospective observational study carried out at All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), tertiary referral hospital in New Delhi, India. The study population included patients diagnosed with malaria (Plasmodium falciparum or Plasmodium vivax) either by rapid diagnostic kit test or positive peripheral smear and age more than 12 years. Forty-nine patients (25 with SM, 24 with UM) and 22 controls were recruited. In addition to routine investigations, serum concentrations of Ang-1, Ang-2, VEGF and ADMA were measured using ELISA technique. Results: We observed Ang-1 serum levels to be significantly lower in patients with severe malaria (7775 pg/ml) compared to uncomplicated malaria (17629 pg/ml) and healthy controls (43472 pg/ml) [p <0.001]. Ang-2 levels were significantly higher in severe malaria (11100 pg/ml) compared to uncomplicated malaria (7315 pg/ml) and healthy controls (3679 pg/ml) (p <0.001). The ratio of Ang-2/Ang-1 was significantly higher in patients with severe malaria. VEGF serum levels was significantly lower in severe malaria (130.36 pg/ml) compared to uncomplicated malaria (317.3 pg/ml). The Ang-1, Ang-2 and VEGF levels were able to differentiate severe malaria from uncomplicated malaria caused by P. vivax but not with P. falciparum. Interpretation & conclusion: We conclude that Ang-1, Ang-2 and VEGF are markers of disease severity in vivax malaria.


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