Diabetes Week is an annual week to raise awareness of diabetes. This year, the aim is to increase the public’s understanding of diabetes 1. Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a global epidemic, increasing at an alarming rate and burdening healthcare systems 2. DM is a life-long condition characterised by the body’s inability to produce / respond to insulin resulting in the abnormal metabolism of carbohydrates and elevated blood glucose levels.
Whilst it is important to increase the public’s understanding of DM, it is imperative that clinicians and physicians are aware of the different in vitro diagnostic tests to diagnose and monitor DM. Not only is this vital, but is also important that clinicians and physicians also understand the different methodologies available when choosing the diagnostic test.
It has been highlighted in numerous clinical studies that diabetic complications may be reduced through the long-term monitoring and tight control of blood glucose levels. Both fasting plasma glucose (FPG) and glycated haemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) tests are universally accepted as reliable measurements of diabetic control. However, studies have emerged highlighting the role of fructosamine in diabetes monitoring. Whilst HbA1c provides an index of glycaemia over 2 to 3 months, fructosamine provides this index over the course of 2 to 3 weeks, enabling closer monitoring of diabetic control 1.
Drawbacks of Traditional Diabetes Tests
The FPG test measures the level of blood sugars which is used to diagnose and monitor diabetes based on insulin function. The main drawback of this test is that a hormone called glucagon, produced in the pancreas, is triggered during prolonged fasting, signalling the liver to release glucose into the bloodstream. In diabetic conditions, either the body is unable to generate enough insulin or cannot appropriately respond to insulin. Consequently, FPG levels remain high 4.
In the 1980’s, HbA1c was incorporated into clinical practice as HbA1c levels correlated well with glycaemic control over a 2 to 3-month period. The main drawback of this test is that any condition that reduces the survival rate of erythrocytes such as haemolytic anaemia will falsely lower the HbA1c test results, regardless of the assay method utilised 5.
In a diabetic patient where blood glucose levels are abnormally elevated, the concentration levels of fructosamine also increase as fructosamine is formed by a non-enzymatic Maillard reaction between glucose and amino acid residues of proteins. During this glycation process, an intermediate labile Schiff base is produced which is converted to a more stable ketoamine (fructosamine) via an Amadori rearrangement 2.
Fructosamine has been identified as an early indicator of diabetic control compared to other markers such as HbA1c. Red blood cells live for approximately 120 days, HbA1c represents the average blood glucose levels for the previous 2 to 3 months. Conversely fructosamine has a shorter lifespan, about 14 to 21 days, reflecting average blood glucose levels from the previous 2 to 3 weeks. Due to the shorter time span of fructosamine, it is also used to evaluate the effectiveness of medication changes and to monitor the treatment of gestational diabetes. The test is also particularly useful in situations where HbA1c cannot be reliably measured e.g. haemolytic anaemia, thalassemia or with genetic haemoglobin variants 5.
Fructosamine Assay Methodology
The most commonly utilised method for fructosamine testing is the colorimetric method. Whilst widely available, automated and inexpensive, the main drawback is the lack of standardisation across the different fructosamine assays 4.
Randox, on the other hand, utilise an enzymatic method, offering improved specificity and reliability compared to conventional NBT-based methods. The Randox enzymatic method does not suffer from non-specific interferences unlike existing methods which can also be time consuming and difficult to automate.
The Randox fructosamine assay is also standardised to the highest level as the Randox fructosamine calibrator and control is assigned relative to human serum glycated with 14C-glucose, which directly reflects the nature of the patient sample.
With an excellent stability of 28 days on-board the analyser, the Randox fructosamine assay is developed in a liquid ready-to-use format for convenience and ease-of-use.
Randox offer fully automated applications detailing instrument-specific settings for the convenient use of the Randox fructosamine assay on a wide range of clinical chemistry analysers.
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Contact us or download our diabetes brochure
Reagents Resource Hub
 Diabetes UK. Diabetes Week. [Online] 2019. [Cited: May 31, 2019.] https://www.diabetes.org.uk/get_involved/diabetes-week.
 Gounden, Verena and Jialal, Ishwarlal. Fructosamine. [Online] January 23, 2019. [Cited: April 11, 2019.] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470185/.
 World Health Organization (WHO). Diabetes. [Online] October 30, 2018. [Cited: May 2, 2019.] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/diabetes.
 Manzella, Debra. The Fasting Plasma Glucose Test. very well health. [Online] November 16, 2018. [Cited: April 11, 2019.] https://www.verywellhealth.com/understanding-the-fasting-plasma-glucose-test-1087680.
 BMJ. Using haemoglobin A1c to diagnose type 2 diabetes or to identify people at high risk of diabetes. [Online] 2014. [Cited: April 11, 2019.] https://www.bmj.com/content/348/bmj.g2867/rr/695927.
The month of May is devoted to myositis awareness, a muscle-wasting disease resulting in reduced muscle strength and fatigue. The term ‘myositis’ is an umbrella term referring to the “general inflammation or swelling of the muscle”. However, myositis is more often referred to as a disease involving chronic inflammation of the muscles which does not improve with rest. This condition is also known as idiopathic inflammatory myopathy (IIM) 1.
Myositis is an autoimmune disease characterised by pain, muscle weaknesses, swelling and extreme fatigue which often gradually appear. Myositis can be potentially life-threatening, especially dermatomyositis which affects the heart muscle and lungs. Whilst a rare disease, it is estimated that 75,000 Americans suffer from myositis, however, many are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with more common autoimmune diseases. Most physicians are unfamiliar with the disease and symptoms and so the consequences of this can be catastrophic in terms of long-term physical muscle damage, disability and even death 1, 2, 3.
Table 1 reviews the different forms of myositis
Table 2 reviews complications with or due to myositis
It is vital that physicians are educated to include myositis despite it being a rare disease as it is essential that myositis patients are diagnosed quickly to ensure appropriate treatment plans are implemented.
Aldolase testing has been recognised as a marker in the differential diagnosis of muscle weakness as aldolase levels remain consistent where weakness is caused by neurological problems such as multiple sclerosis (MS). Aldolase is an enzyme specifically found in skeletal muscle and the liver. When either the muscle or liver are damaged, aldolase is released into the bloodstream 13 . A few studies support aldolase testing in the diagnosis of myositis:
1. Arthritis Research & Therapy (2012): Aldolase predicts subsequent myopathy occurrence in systemic sclerosis 14
A French monocentric 4-year study prospectively evaluated n=137 systemic sclerosis (SSc) patients without proximal muscle weakness to assess the risk of myopathy related systemic sclerosis (Myo-SSc) according to the European Neuro Muscular Centre criteria. Aldolase, creatine kinase (CK), C-reactive protein (CRP), alanine transaminase (ALT) and aspartate transaminase (AST) were evaluated.
Aldolase is a valuable diagnostic tool in the identification of SSc patients at a high risk of developing subsequent Myo-SSc. This enables clinicians to monitor at-risk patients as well as identifying Myo-SSc in its earliest stages, enabling the effective and swift implementation of an appropriate treatment plan when the muscle damage is still in a reversible stage.
2. Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology (2013): Isolated elevation of aldolase in the serum of myositis patients: a potential biomarker of damaged early regenerating muscle cells 15
The in vitro analysis of the gene and protein expression levels of aldolase and CK during muscle cell differentiation.
Aldolase A is expressed in the absence of CK in undifferentiated muscle cells and in the early differentiation process. Isolated elevated serum aldolase A in myositis patients reflects preferential immune-mediated damage of early regenerative cells. Aldolase is a biomarker of damaged early regenerating muscle cells.
Myositis can be a potentially life-threatening disease when undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. Aldolase is recognised as a biomarker in the diagnosis and monitoring of myositis. Randox are one of the only in-vitro diagnostic manufacturers to offer the aldolase assay in an automated and manual biochemistry format. Not only does the Randox methodology have an excellent correlation coefficient to r=0.9917 when compared against standard methods, the Randox assay is lyophilised for enhanced stability with an excellent measuring range of 1.73 – 106U/l. Moreover, applications are available detailing instrument-specific settings for the convenient use of the Randox aldolase assay on a wide range of clinical chemistry analysers.
Want to know more?
Contact us or download our high performance & unique tests brochure
Reagents Resource Hub
Clinical Chemistry Panel
 The Myositis Association. About Myositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/.
 Kobert, Linda. Myositis, a rare muscular inflammatory disease that ofen goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed, disproportionally impacts women of color. s.l. : The Myositis Organisation.
 Muscular Dystophy UK. Myositis. [Online] [Cited: May 6, 2019.] https://www.musculardystrophyuk.org/about-muscle-wasting-conditions/myositis/.
 The Myositis Association. Types of Myositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/types-of-myositis/.
 —. Sporadic Inclusion Body Myositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/types-of-myositis/sporadic-inclusion-body-myositis/.
 —. Dermatomyositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/types-of-myositis/dermatomyositis/.
 —. Polymyositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/types-of-myositis/polymyositis/.
 —. Necrotizing Myopathy. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/types-of-myositis/necrotizing-myopathy/.
 —. Juvenile Myositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/types-of-myositis/juvenile-myositis/.
 —. Cancer-associated myositis. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/complications/cancer-associated-myositis/.
 —. Infection. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/complications/infection/.
 —. Cardiovascular Disease. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/complications/cardiovascular-disease/.
 —. Blood Tests. [Online] [Cited: May 3, 2019.] https://www.myositis.org/about-myositis/diagnosis/blood-tests/.
 Aldolase predicts subsequent myopathy occurrrence in systemic sclerosis. Tolédano, Cécile, et al. Faubourg Saint-Antoine : Arthritis Research & Therapy, 2012.
 Isolated elevation of aldolase in the serum of myositis patients: a potential biomarker of damaged early regenerating muscle cells. Casciola-Rosen, Livia, et al. Baltimore : Clinical and Experimental Rheumatology, 2013.
Randox RX daytona+ (FDA) 510 (K) Clearance
Randox Laboratories a world leader in the in-vitro diagnostic industry with over 35 years’ experience is pleased to announce 510K clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the RX daytona+ clinical chemistry analyzer. Renowned for quality and reliability, the RX series leads the way with the world’s most extensive dedicated clinical chemistry test menu comprising routine chemistries, specific proteins, lipids, therapeutic drugs, drugs of abuse, antioxidants, diabetes and veterinary testing. Guaranteeing real cost savings through consolidation of routine and specialized tests onto a single platform, the RX series of analyzers offers excellence in patient care, delivering unrivalled precision, accuracy and reliability.
The RX daytona+ fully automated, benchtop, clinical chemistry analyzer is capable of performing high quality testing including emergency STAT sampling and boasts a combined throughput of 450 tests per hour including ISE. The most versatile chemistry analyzer in its class, the RX daytona+ presents laboratories with a range of benefits offering optimum performance, unrivalled uptime, flexibility, efficiency and functionality.
Randox have a long history of being at the forefront of diagnostic testing and have brought to market a range of innovative and versatile clinical chemistry analyzers developed to revolutionize patient testing in a variety of laboratory types including; Clinical Laboratories, University & Research Institutes, Veterinary Laboratories and Food & Wine Laboratories. The capabilities of the RX daytona+ exceed in any laboratory setting regardless of size, boasting an array of innovative features, including a significant reduction in sample volume of just 1.5-35 µl with a sample dead volume of 150 µl for standard and 100 µl for pediatric samples.
The RX daytona+ presents excellent functionality with easy to use Windows 10 based software, minimal maintenance and advanced QC capabilities generating Levey-Jennings charts, calibration curves and QC statistics all contributing to the increased precision, accuracy and reliability the RX series is famed for. As a performance advantage, the RX daytona+ provides laboratories with the ability to consolidate a wide variety of routine and specialized tests onto a single platform with excellent correlation to gold standard methodologies. Providing laboratories globally with efficiencies in time, money, ease of use, unrivalled uptime and superior technical support, the RX daytona+ is the most advanced and versatile clinical chemistry analyzer available.
Timothy Lenz – Regional Sales Manager USA
“The RX Daytona+ receiving FDA 510K clearance will provide a much-needed addition to the US clinical laboratory market. The RX Daytona+ serves the needs of lower throughput, moderate complexity labs, while still offering many of the features found on larger floor-standing analyzers – full automation, ability to process bar-coded samples in primary tubes, variable speed paddle mixers, and dedicated sample and reagent probes, all on a versatile platform with low operating costs and maintenance requirements. The high-quality construction of the RX Daytona+ ensures an incredibly reliable platform with the lowest downtime figures in its class. The wide testing menu of the RX Daytona+ allows labs to bring additional profitable testing in-house, so that results can be returned more quickly, and diagnoses/treatment plans formulated without delay. Randox is the only company that can truly provide a single-vendor solution for clinical chemistry testing – reliable analyzers, dedicated reagents, and third-party QC materials, all from the same provider.”
About Randox Laboratories
As a world leader in the in-vitro diagnostic industry with over 35 years’ experience, Randox is leading the charge in moving from a one-size-fits-all approach towards decisions, practices and products tailored to the needs of the individual. This innovative approach to diagnostics has facilitated the development of revolutionary products designed specifically to enhance a patients’ quality of life.
Want to know more?
Contact us or visit our RX page to learn more.
To date, the most traditional diagnostic test for renal impairment is creatinine. However, although most commonly used, problems can arise when implementing this test as a number of factors are not considered. On this World Kidney Day, Randox will explore the potential utility of H-FABP as a clinical diagnostic marker for cardiac surgery-associated acute kidney injury.
Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) is defined as an acute decline in renal function that can lead to structural changes. It involves a sudden drop in kidney function that usually arises due to a complication of another serious illness such as impaired renal perfusion, exposure to nephrotoxins, outflow obstruction or intrinsic renal disease. As a result, a patient can experience effects such as impaired clearance and regulation of homeostasis, altered acid/base and electrolyte regulation and impaired volume regulation.1
The mortality rate associated with AKI varies depending on severity, patient related factors and setting including whether the patient is in intensive care (ICU) or not.2 In the UK, AKI has been found to affect 1 in 5 people admitted to hospital as an emergency and has been found to be deadlier than a heart attack, contributing to around 100,000 deaths each year. Conversely, in the US, age-standardized rates of acute kidney injury hospitalisations increased by 139% among adults with diagnosed diabetes and by 230% among those without diabetes.3, 4
The rising incidence of AKI comes at price. Patients tend to survive ICU but will be discharged with various degrees of chronic kidney disease (CKD), placing an increasing strain on the health care system. At present, the cost to the NHS is estimated to be between £434 and £620 million, which is more than the costs associated with breast cancer, or lung and skin cancer combined. However, this increased cost and strain could be unnecessary, as research has shown that 30% of the reported 100,000 deaths in the UK could have been prevented with the right care and treatment.3,4
These unfavourable statistics are the result of late detection of AKI, as to date, a superior method of detection has not been found.
Cardiac surgery-associated acute kidney injury (CSA-AKI)
CSA-AKI is a well-recognised postoperative complication of cardiac surgery and is the second most common cause of AKI in the intensive care unit, occurring in up to 30% of patients.5,6 Of these patients, an estimated 1% will require dialysis and the majority will remain dependent on dialysis leading to an increase in mortality. Certain patient groups are more susceptible to CSA-AKI and vulnerability can depend on age, sex, pre-existing cardiac dysfunction, pre-existing CKD, previous cardiac surgery or comorbidity.7
The pathogenesis of AKI involves multiple pathways including hemodynamic, inflammatory and nephrotoxic factors that overlap leading to kidney injury.6 Figure 1 illustrates the pathophysiology of AKI following cardiac surgery. It shows that there are multiple physiological processes that are associated with the development of AKI as a result of cardiac surgery.8
Figure 1 Illustrates the pathophysiology of AKI following cardiac surgery and the various mechanisms that contribute.8
What is H-FABP?
Fatty acid-binding proteins (FABPs) are small cytoplasmic proteins that are abundantly expressed in tissues with an active fatty acid metabolism, with their primary function being the facilitation of intracellular long-chain fatty acid transport.9 Elevated FABP serum concentrations are related to a number of common comorbidities including heart failure, CKD, diabetes mellitus and metabolic syndrome, which represent important risk factors for postoperative AKI.10
H-FABP is most commonly associated with being a marker for acute coronary syndrome (ACS) as its concentrations peak at approximately 6-8 hours after symptom onset, making it easier to detect. Recently studies have highlighted H-FABP as a potential biomarker for the detection of AKI after cardiac surgery. This potential would mean earlier diagnosis of patients, reducing the mortality rate and costs to the health service.
Potential Mechanism for the release of H-FABP in AKI
There are a number of hypotheses regarding the release of H-FABP, with myocardial injury being considered the major reason for an increased level. The mechanisms involved in this increase have been found to differ depending on the severity of a patients ACS situation including whether they are in ICU.11
One possible explanation for the release of H-FABP is the effects of ischemic stress. Ischemic stress induced by non-cardiogenic shock is a type of mechanical stretching which can lead to the leakage of small amounts of macromolecules. This process would lead to the release of H-FABP into the blood. In non-cardiac patients, minor myocardial injury alone may not adequately explain this observed increase. Other factors such as a reduction in the amount of skeletal muscle tissue, lipid disorders, release of free radicals and an increase in free acids produced by the catabolism of glycogen could also contribute to a rise in H-FABP levels.11
One final process that could lead to increased H-FABP is the damage of vital organ functions which occurs in almost all non-surgical intensive care patients. The degree of leakage of H-FABP may vary depending on the severity of a patient’s condition and whether they have suffered from multiple organ failure or vital organ damage. AKI is a component of multiple organ failure suggesting that serum H-FABP levels may increase in AKI patients as a result. Also, serum H-FABP is excreted by renal tubular cells and patients with an acutely diminished renal function are unable to clear large amounts of H-FABP resulting in increasing levels. These potential mechanisms of H-FABP and its release during AKI provide further confirmation that the measurement of serum H-FABP is an effective biomarker in patients with AKI.11
Comparison of H-FABP Measurement Against Traditional Acute Kidney Disease Measurement Tools
For years, no standard method for definition or diagnosis was in place for AKI. The RIFLE classification was introduced in 2004, which defined and staged renal failure over seven days into five classes of increasing severity including; risk, injury, failure, loss and end-stage kidney disease.
The RIFLE criteria were then revised by the Acute Kidney Injury Network (AKIN) and introduced four main changes including replacing the period of seven days for serum creatinine (SCr) with forty eight hours and implementing SCr changes as low as 0.3 mg/dL as the lowest measure considered as AKI. However, despite these changes the Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcome (KDIGO) proposed that AKI is defined when any of the three criteria are met including increase in SCr by 50% in seven days, increase in SCr > 0.3 mg/dL or oliguria.7
However, despite these advances, identification and management of AKI is still difficult for two main reasons. The change of SCr does not occur until two to three days after the initial insult. Also, serum creatinine can rise for a variety of reasons such as tubular injury, hemodynamic alterations or cardio-renal interactions.
The utility of SCr as biomarker for CSA- AKI is questionable as changes occur 48 hours to seven days after the original insult.5 The delays in diagnosis of CSA-AKI may have detrimental effects as prolonging the diagnosis period may result in the disease already being well established.12
Also, a main issue concerning the AKI criteria established is its relevance to the perioperative period. Many surgical patients arrive in hospital without preoperative SCr concentrations being measured, potentially leading to over-diagnosis of AKI. However, when patients do arrive with a preoperative SCr concentration, the opposite can occur and immediate postoperative period SCr concentrations can be lower than baseline as a result of haemodilution. A comparison of the postoperative and preoperative values can lead to under-diagnosis of AKI and consequently delayed treatment.12
The research conducted has illustrated that SCr is not the most appropriate biomarker for diagnosis of AKI. Studies have demonstrated that H-FABP has more clinical utility and is released less than thirty minutes after myocardial injury and renally excreted within 24 hours, showing that as a biomarker it responds faster than creatinine.12
How Randox can Help
The Randox H-FABP test tests utilises an immunoturbidimetric method, offers a wide measuring range and is available liquid ready-to-use for convenience and ease of use.
Want to know more?
Contact us or visit the Randox H-FABP Site
- National Kidney Foundation. Acute Kidney Injury (AKI). National Kidney Foundation. [Online] National Kidney Foundation. [Cited: February 3, 2019.] https://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/AcuteKidneyInjury.
- Biomarkers for the prediction of acute kidney injury: a narrative review on current status and future challenges. Geus, de, MG, Betjes and J , Bakker. 2, s.l. : NCBI, 2012, Vol. 5.
- Kidney Care UK. A range of useful facts and stats about kidneys. Kidney Care UK. [Online] Kidney Care UK. [Cited: February 15, 2019.] https://www.kidneycareuk.org/news-and-campaigns/facts-and-stats/.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Trends in Hospitalizations for Acute Kidney Injury — United States, 2000–2014. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. [Online] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, March 16, 2018. [Cited: February 22, 2019.] https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/67/wr/mm6710a2.htm.
- Cardiac Surgery-Associated Acute Kidney Injury. Mao, h, et al. s.l. : Karger, 2013, Vol. 3.
- Acute Kidney Injury Associated with Cardiac Surgery. Rosner, Mitchell and Okusa, Mark. 1, s.l. : Clinical Journal of American Society of Nephrology, 2016, Vol. 1.
- Cardiac surgery-associated acute kidney injury. Loubon, Christian, et al. 4, s.l. : NCBI, 2016, Vol. 19.
- Acute kidney injury following cardiac surgery: current understanding and future directions. O’Neal, Jason, Shaw, Andrew and Billings, Frederic. s.l. : NCBI, 2016, Vol. 20.
- Heart-type fatty acid-binding protein predicts long-term mortality after acute coronary syndrome and identifieshigh-risk patients across the range of troponin values. Kilcullen, N, et al. 20, s.l. : Epub, 2012, Vol. 50.
- Preoperative serum h-FABP concentration is associated with postoperative incidence of acute kidney injury in patients undergoing cardiac surgery. Oezkur, Mehmet, et al. 117, s.l. : BMC Cardiovascular Disorders, 2014, Vol. 14.
- The serum heart-type fatty acid-binding protein (HFABP) levels can be used to detect the presence of acute kidney injury on admission in patients admitted to the non-surgical intensive care unit. Shirakabe, A, et al. 1, s.l. : NCBI, 2016, Vol. 16.
- Perioperative acute kidney injury. Goren, O and Matot, I. 2, s.l. : British Journal of Anaesthesia, 2015, Vol. 115.
Rare Disease Day raises awareness of rare diseases and how patients’ lives are affected. Many rare diseases remain incurable and many go undiagnosed. 1 in 20 people will live with a rare disease at some point in their life and this is why it is so important to raise awareness.1
What is a rare disease?
There is no single definition for a rare disease, as many countries identify them differently. In the United States, the Rare Diseases Act of 2002 defines a rare disease by its prevalence: “any disease or condition that affects fewer than 200,000 people in the United States”. However, the EU defines a rare disease as a condition that affects less than 5 in 10,000 of the population. There are approximately 7000 rare diseases and disorders and 50% of people affected by rare diseases are children.2,3
Hyperlipoproteinemia type III
This rare disease day, Randox will be raising awareness of hyperlipoproteinemia type III. Hyperlipoproteinemia type III, also known as dysbetalipoproteinemia or broad beta disease, is a rare genetic disorder characterised by improper breakdown of lipids, specifically cholesterol and triglycerides. The condition is caused by mutations in the Apo-E gene, however the inheritance of this condition is complicated due to the development of symptoms having to be triggered by a secondary factor to raise lipid levels. These factors include diabetes, obesity or hypothyroidism.
It is unknown exactly what the prevalence of the condition is, but it is estimated to affect approximately 1 in 5,000 – 10,000 of the general population and it has been found that it affects males more often than females, with women rarely being affected until after menopause.4,5
Figure A. Example of cholesterol and lipid build-up 
Symptoms for hyperlipoproteinemia type III will vary for each individual and some people may even be asymptomatic. The most common symptom is the development of xanthomas which are deposits of fatty material, the lipids, in the skin and underlying tissue. Xanthomas may appear on the palms of the hands, eyelids, soles of the feet or on the tendons of the knees and elbows.
> Chest pain or other signs of coronary artery disease
> Cramps in the calves when walking
> Sores on toes
> Stroke-like symptoms such as trouble speaking, dropping on one side of the face, weakness in an arm or a leg and a loss of balance6
Complications can arise if the condition is left untreated and these can include: myocardial infarction, ischemic stroke, peripheral vascular disease, intermittent claudication and gangrene of the lower extremities.7
Although there is no specific diagnostic test for hyperlipoproteinemia type III, diagnosis is based on clinical evaluation and identification of symptoms. Research has indicated that an algorithm comprising a number of dysbetalipoproteinemia indices may be helpful in the diagnosis of the disease. These include:
> Low apolipoprotein B to total cholesterol ratio
> Elevated levels of triglycerides
> Elevated levels of total cholesterol8
Managing the condition
The condition cannot be cured but treatment is to control conditions such as obesity, hypothyroidism and diabetes. Most patients will go through dietary therapy to control their intake of cholesterol and saturated fat. This prevents xanthomas, high levels of lipids in the blood, exercise will also help to lower lipid levels. However, dietary changes may not be effective for some individuals and this is where drugs may be used to lower lipid levels instead.
How Randox can Help
Randox offer a range of routine and niche assays within the lipid testing panel to monitor lipid levels and to identify associated complications. Some of these tests include:
The Randox Apolipoprotein B tests utilises an immunoturbidimetric method, offers a wide measuring range and is available liquid ready-to-use for convenience and ease of use.
The Randox Total Cholesterol test utilises the CHOD-PAP method and offers an extensive measuring range with a wide range of kits available to suit a wide range of laboratory sizes.
The Randox Triglycerides test utilises the GPO-PAP method while offering an extensive measuring range with both liquid and lyophilised formats available offering choice and flexibility.
Want to know more?
Contact us or download our Cardiology and Lipid Testing brochure to learn more.
Lipid Panel Page
 Rare Disease Day. What is Rare Disease Day? Rare Disease Day. [Online] 2019. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://www.rarediseaseday.org/article/what-is-rare-disease-day
 Genetic Alliance UK. What is a Rare Disease? Rare Disease UK. [Online] 2018. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://www.raredisease.org.uk/what-is-a-rare-disease/
 NZORD. Rare Disease Facts and Figures. NZORD. [Online] 2019. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://www.nzord.org.nz/helpful-information/rare-disease-facts-and-figures.
 NORD. Hyperlipoproteinemia Type III. NORD. [Online] 2019. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/hyperlipoproteinemia-type-iii/
 GARD. Hyperlipidemia Type 3. National Centre for Advanciing Translational Sciences. [Online] December 29, 2016. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/diseases/6703/hyperlipidemia-type-3
 Falck, Suzanne. Everything you need to know about hyperlipidemia. Medical News Today. [Online] December 21, 2017. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/295385.php
 Medline Plus. Familial Dysbetalipoproteinemia. Medline Plus. [Online] May 16, 2018. [Cited: February 21, 2019.] https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/000402.htm.
 Dysbetalipoproteinemia: Two cases report and a diagnostic algorithm. Kei, Anastazia, et al. 4, s.l. : World Journal of Clinical Cases, 2015, Vol. 3.
Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the number one cause of death globally with more people dying annually from CVD than any other disease state. In 2018, according to the American Heart Association, CVD accounted for nearly 836,546 deaths in the USA (1) with over 17 million known deaths recorded worldwide. It is also proclaimed that around 1.5 million people globally die each year because of diabetes and diabetes related complications. (2) Is there a common link? Can this issue be controlled?
Studies have suggested that diabetes is one of the leading related conditions associated with increased risk of CVD death. A recent study undertaken in 2018 examined the association of many risk factors associated with CVD, the study was broken down by disease state with over 17,000 participants involved. The findings highlighted that 17.9% of these patients suffered from diabetes mellitus and death from a cardiovascular event. (3) Many other pilot and research studies discovered similar findings considering further risk factors such as high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol and high triglycerides, obesity, lack of exercise and lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol and drug abuse. All of which are common with patients who suffer from diabetes, placing them at an increased risk of CVD.
Findings highlighted that over 68% of people aged over 65 living with diabetes die from some form of heart disease with 16% of individuals dying from an ischemic stroke. (4) The ability to tackle the prevalence of increased death from CVD and diagnosis of diabetes has become a global burden with the international diabetes federation projecting that 592 million people worldwide will have diabetes by 2035. (5)
Worldwide, the increase of diabetes is becoming an economic burden on the patient and healthcare systems mainly due to the direct costs of medical care and the indirect costs of moderated productivity, tied to diabetes and CVD related morbidity and mortality. Many scholars have highlighted economic burden as a primary attribute to both macrovascular and microvascular complications such as coronary artery disease, myocardial infarction, hypertension, peripheral vascular disease, retinopathy, end-stage renal disease and neuropathy. (6)
Overcoming the Burden
As CVD is the most prevalent cause of mortality and morbidity in patients with diabetes, effective treatment and analysis is required to control and decrease the number of CVD deaths across the globe. Tackling this issue head on, the Randox RX series introduce Direct HbA1c which refers to glycated haemoglobin which is a product of haemoglobin (a protein which can be found in red blood cells) and glucose from the blood making it glycated.
Testing for HbA1c provides an indication of what an individual’s average blood sugar level has been over recent weeks/months and is generally considered as an indicator of how well the patient is managing and controlling their diabetes. This is significant for those who suffer from diabetes because the higher the levels of HbA1c, the higher the chance of an individual suffering from further diabetes related issues, therefore testing for HbA1c improves the predictions of a CVD event occurring.
The Randox RX series have Direct HbA1c testing capabilities on the RX Daytona +, RX imola and RX modena. Our latex enhanced immunoturbidimetric method which the RX series utilises makes the test simple and quick to perform. The removal of the pre-dilution step removes the risk of human error compromising your results without the need for a separate HbA1c analyser.
Offering the world’s largest test menu, the RX series has an extensive range of cardiac, diabetes and lipid tests with excellent correlation to gold standard methodologies designed to allow laboratories to expand their testing capabilities onto one single platform, providing cost savings through consolidation.
- American Heart Association. (2018). Heart Disease and Stroke Statistics 2018 At-a-Glance.Available: https://www.heart.org/-/media/data-import/downloadables/heart-disease-and-stroke-statistics-2018—at-a-glance-ucm_498848.pdf. Last accessed 7th Feb 2019.
- World Heart Federation. (2017). Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) – Global facts and figures.Available: https://www.world-heart-federation.org/resources/cardiovascular-diseases-cvds-global-facts-figures/. Last accessed 7th Feb 2019.
- Gomadam, P et al, (2018). Blood pressure indices and cardiovascular disease mortality in persons with or without diabetes mellitus. Journal of Hypertension. 36 (1), 1-5.
- Heart attack and stroke symptoms. (2018). Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes.Available: https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/diabetes/why-diabetes-matters/cardiovascular-disease–diabetes. Last accessed 7th Feb 2019.
- Aguiree F, Brown A, Cho NH, Dahlquist G, Dodd S, Dunning T, Hirst M, Hwang C, Magliano D, Patterson C. (2013) IDF Diabetes Atlas.
- Bahia LR, Araujo DV, Schaan BD, Dib SA, Negrato CA, Leão MP, Ramos AJ, Forti AC, Gomes MB, Foss MC, Monteiro RA, Sartorelli D, Franco LJ, Value Health. (2011), 137-40.
Why Choose the RX series?
Notorious for quality and reliability, the Randox RX series delivers on precision, reliability and accuracy, revolutionising patient testing in a variety of laboratory types including Clinical Laboratories, University & Research Institutes and Veterinary Laboratories.
The RX series is world renowned for delivering superior performance, our comprehensive test menu comprises over 113 clinical chemistry assays – 22 more than our nearest competitor. In addition to this we offer superior methodology for many assays with excellent correlation to gold standard methods. Our test menu is constanty expanding and currently covers routine chemistry, specific proteins, lipids, cardiac markers, therapeutic drugs, drugs of abuse, antioxidants and diabetes testing including direct HbA1c testing capabilities. Designed to meet the needs of your laboratory, our range of novel tests allow laboratories to expand their test menu without expanding their lab ultimately reducing costs, labour and the risk of error without the need for additional / specialised equipment.
With a versatile range of semi-automated and automated analysers, the RX series offers flexibility to suit the needs of all laboratory requirements. Built on the foundations of robust hardware and intuitive software, the RX series will reduce costly test re-runs and potential misdiagnosis. With minimal analyser downtime significant cost and time savings are a reality.
Our prominent reputation of providing laboratories with unrivalled customer and technical support across the globe surpasses that of any of our competitors complementing our extensive and world leading test menu. We pride ourselves in both the delivery and functionality of high quality clinical chemistry analysers, dedicated reagents and support ensuring accuracy and reliability in reporting patient results.
Offering the World’s Largest Clinical Chemistry Test Menu
Most recently the RX series welcomed the addition of Direct HbA1c to our testing panel, available to be run on the RX Daytona +, RX imola and RX modena. If you are interested in running your assays on a routine biochemistry analyser, Randox offers a large range of high quality routine and niche protein assays that can be run on most automated analysers.
Click to discover more about our world leading RX series Testing menu or contact us today @theRXseries to find out how we can improve your laboratories testing capabilities.
The month of January has forever been the month of resolutions with many choosing to ditch the sweets and join the gym. However, for many these efforts are limited to January and bad habits are quick to remerge. Obesity has been a burden on the health service for many years with the problem, like many people’s waist lines, only continuing to expand.
Recent findings have shown that this problem is no longer just increasing in developed countries but also in developing countries. In fact, worldwide obesity has tripled since 1975. In 2016, more than 1.9 million adults were classed as overweight, of which over 650 million were obese.1 These are shocking statistics for a condition that is preventable. As a global concern, it is important to assess all the potential risks of this problem.
The most common diseases associated with obesity are cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes. However, the associated risks are much greater than this. Being overweight may also increase the risk of certain types of cancer, sleep apnea, osteoarthritis, fatty liver disease and kidney disease.2
Obesity is now recognised as a potent risk factor for the development of renal disease.3 Excess weight has a direct impact on the development and progression of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Globally, the prevalence of diabetic kidney disease rose by 39.5% between 2005 and 2015, coinciding with the increased CKD prevalence.4 In obese individuals, the kidneys have to work harder, filtering more blood than normal to meet the metabolic demands of increased body weight, increasing the risk of kidney disease.
The traditional diagnostic test for renal impairment is creatinine. This test is carried out through the measurement of creatinine levels in the blood to assess the kidneys ability to clear creatinine from the body. This is called the creatinine clearance rate which helps to estimate the glomerular filtration rate (GFR), which is the rate of blood flow through the kidneys.5
Problems arise when using creatinine for CKD testing as a number of factors need to be taken into consideration including age, gender, ethnicity and muscle mass. For this reason, black men and women exhibit higher creatinine levels than white men and women, raising concern over the accuracy of this test for certain patient groups.6 In addition, serum creatinine is not an adequate screening test for renal impairment in the elderly due to their decreased muscle mass.7
The main disadvantage of using creatinine to screen for renal impairment is that up to 50% of renal function can be lost before significant creatinine levels become detectable as creatinine is insensitive to small changes in GFR. Consequently, treatment is not provided at the appropriate time which can be fatal, therefore, an earlier and more sensitive marker for renal function is vital.8
These disadvantages have not only been highlighted in research but also by the national institute for health and care excellence (NICE). NICE updated the classification of CKD in 2004 to include the albumin: creatinine ratio (ACR). They split chronic kidney disease patients into categories based on GFR and ACR. Figure 1 highlights the different categories and risk of adverse outcomes. NICE recommend using eGFR Cystatin C for people in the CKD G3aA1 and higher.9
Figure 1 Classification of Chronic Kidney Disease using GFR and ACR categories.9
Despite these suggestions, Creatinine is still being used for G3a1 and increasing risk levels.
The utility of cystatin C as a diagnostic biomarker for kidney disease has been documented to show superiority of traditional CKD tests. There is no ‘blind area’ making it very sensitive to small changes in GFR and capable of detecting early reductions. Furthermore, this marker is less influenced by diet or muscle mass and has proven to be a beneficial test in patients who are overweight.8
A number of studies support the statement: ‘Cystatin C levels are higher in overweight and obese patients’. This is important because when cystatin c levels are too high, it may suggest that the kidneys are not functioning properly. One study conducted, using a nationally representative sample of participants, found that overweight and obesity maintained a strong association with elevated serum cystatin C. This suggests that weight can affect the levels of cystatin C and therefore the likelihood of developing kidney disease.10
How Randox can Help
The Randox automated Latex Enhanced Immunoturbidimetric Cystatin C tests offers an improved method for assessing CKD risk, combined with a convenient format for routine clinical use, for the early assessment of at risk patients. Randox is currently one of the only diagnostic manufacturers who offer an automated biochemistry test for Cystatin C measurement, worldwide.
Want to know more?
Contact us or visit our featured reagent page to learn more.
- World Health Organization. Obesity and Overweight . int. [Online] WHO. [Cited: January 22, 2019.] https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/obesity-and-overweight.
- Health Risks of Being Overweight. NIDDK. [Online] National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. [Cited: March 24, 2019.] https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/weight-management/health-risks-overweight.
- Kidney Health Australia . Obesity and Chronic Kidney Disease: The Hidden Impact. Kidney Health Week/ World Kidney Day 2017. [Online] Kidney Health Australia. [Cited: January 22, 2019.] https://kidney.org.au/cms_uploads/docs/kidney-health-australia-report-obesity-and-chronic-kidney-disease–the-hidden-impact_06.03.17.pdf.
- Neuen, Brendon Lange, et al. Chronic kidney disease and the global NCDs agenda. s.l. : BMJ Global Health, 2017
- Creatinine and Creatinine Clearance Blood Tests. WebMD. [Online] WebMD. [Cited: January 22, 2019.] https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/creatinine-and-creatinine-clearance-blood-tests#1.
- Lascano, Martin E and Poggio, Emilio D. Kidney Function Assessment by Creatinine-Based Estimation Equations. Cleveland Clinic. [Online] August 2010. [Cited: 16 May 2018.] http://www.clevelandclinicmeded.com/medicalpubs/diseasemanagement/nephrology/kidneyfunction/.
- Swedko, Peter J, et al. Serum Creatinine Is an Inadequate Screening Test for Renal Failure in Elderly Patients. Research Gate. [Online] February 2003. [Cited: 6 May 2018.] https://www.researchgate.net/publication/8243393_Serum_Creatinine_Is_an_Inadequate_ Screening_Test_for_Renal_Failure_in_Elderly_Patients.
- Mishra, Umashankar. New technique developed to detect chronic kidney disease. Business Line. [Online] 07 May 2018. [Cited: 17 May 2018.] https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/news/science/new-technique-to-detect-chronic-kidney-disease/article23803316.ece.
- National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. Chronic kidney disease in adults: assessment and management: 1 Recommendations. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. [Online] January 2015. https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/cg182/chapter/1- recommendations#classification-of-chronic-kidney-disease-2.
- Overweight and Obesity and Elevated Serum Cystatin C Levels in US Adults . Muntner, Paul, et al. 4, s.l. : NCBI, 2008, Vol. 121.
In clinical diagnostics, proteins are part of a wide range of biochemical markers used to identify health and disease in patient samples. Proteins play a key role in the human body, as they are involved in almost every process and can be associated to functions and regulatory pathways that are either signature for disease onset or a target for therapeutic intervention.
There are two main methods used to detect proteins in patient samples; nephelometry and immunoturbidimetry. Nephelometry although traditionally thought to be more sensitive can be expensive due to higher consumable costs. In addition to this nephelometers can be inefficient and are limited by their test menu. Immunoturbidimetric tests are an increasingly accepted alternative to nephelometry for specific protein assays, and studies have shown a close correlation between Randox immunoturbidimetric tests and nephelometry. This particularly lies with the latex enhanced immunoturbidimetry methodology utilised by Randox.
Why the RX series?
Renowned for quality and reliability, the RX series excels in clinical testing combining robust hardware, intuitive software and a world leading test menu featuring routine and novel high performing reagents.
Running specific protein tests on the RX series provides laboratories with a wide range of advantages. The move from nephelometric testing to immunoturbidimetric lowers laboratory costs as nephelometry requires the use of dedicated instruments which are much slower, have higher consumable costs and require highly trained personnel, with the disadvantage of not being able to perform any other type of assay on a single platform.
The RX series improves laboratory efficiencies not just saving costs but also time. Our range of routine clinical chemistry analysers provide users with flexibility and versatility through consolidation of testing onto one single platform.
High Performing and Unique Testing Menu
The RX series of specific protein assays assist in the diagnosis and evaluation of various conditions each with excellent sensitivity and limited inference levels. Randox manufacture immunoturbidimetric kits for the study of a wide range of specific proteins including unique products such as Apolipoprotein C-II, Apolipoprotein C-III, Apolipoprotein E, Cystatin C and Microalbumin.
Most recently the RX series welcomed the addition of Direct HbA1c to our testing panel, available to be run on the RX Daytona +, RX imola and RX modena. If you are interested in running your protein assays on a routine biochemistry analyser, Randox offers a large range of high quality routine and niche protein assays that can be run on most automated analysers.
Click to discover more about our world leading RX series Testing menu or contact us today @theRXseries to find out how we can improve your laboratories testing capabilities.
Approximately 400,000 people in the UK are living with type 1 diabetes, with over 29,000 being children and young people . Type 1 diabetes affects 96% of all children with diabetes in England and Wales, with incidences increasing by approximately 4% each year.
Globally, the UK has the fifth highest rate of type 1 diabetes diagnosis in children (aged up to 14) with 85% of these children having no family history of the condition. Whilst the condition isn’t fatal and can be managed, it cannot be cured. Type 1 diabetes increases the risk of developing other health problems such as heart disease, stroke, foot and circulation problems, sight problems including blindness, nerve damage and kidney problems. However, many of these related conditions are preventable and it is recommended to stabilise blood sugar levels, attend diabetes appointments regularly and complete a diabetes course to educate patients and family members and prevent the risk of further help complications.
Diabetes in children
Children under five are at the highest risk of developing diabetic ketoacidosis due to a late diagnosis and it is also thought to be due to of lack of public knowledge of the signs and symptoms attributed to type 1 diabetes. Such symptoms include:
- Frequent urination as the kidneys are trying to expel excess sugar in the blood, resulting in dehydration which leads to extreme thirst.
- Increased hunger or unexpected weight loss because the body is unable to attain enough energy from food
- Slow healing cuts as high blood sugar levels can affect blood flow which can cause nerve damage.
- Fatigue as the body is unable to convert sugar into energy
- Irritable behaviour combined with other symptoms can be a means of concern
Diabetes and the NHS
Diabetes costs the NHS approximately £9.8 billion per year, an estimate of 10% of total expenditures. Hospital admissions of children and young people with diabetes presents a considerable burden on themselves, their families and the NHS. It is estimated that approximately 80% of these cases are potentially avoidable.
A report produced by the National Paediatric Diabetes Audit found that although the numbers of admissions didn’t significantly differ year to year, it highlighted differences in terms of socio-economic risk factors:
- Living in a deprived area increases the risk of hospital admissions which can be attributed to lack of education in the community about diabetic symptoms and the management of diabetes.
- Children below 5 years of age have a 35% increased risk of hospitalisation compared to those aged 5-9
- Females have a 33% increased risk of developing type 1 diabetes compared to males.
- Children with poor diabetes control have a twelve-fold increased risk of hospital admission
- Insulin pump users have a 27% increased risk of hospital admission compared to those who use insulin injections.
Figure A. Number of preventable paediatric diabetes admissions 
There are campaigns in place to aid in the early diagnosis of type 1 diabetes which mainly focus on raising awareness of the signs and symptoms of diabetes. On this World Diabetes Day, it is important to know that it is not just simply the responsibility of the diabetic patient to prevent admission but the main responsibility lies with the diabetic teams that inform the families with children who are diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
Paediatric diabetes teams should ensure that the families and the children receive structured education for self-management when diagnosed and throughout the illness. In doing so, the diabetic teams should implement blood ketone testing from diagnosis and utilise the nationally agreed hypoglycaemia management guidelines. It is also important that diabetic teams are fully aware of the patient characteristics associated with a greater risk of admission and that they use this knowledge to develop anti-admission strategies specifically tailored to the needs of each individual group.
Primary care practitioners should seek access to a specialist diabetic team who they can refer to when deciding if a patient requires admission to hospital. Furthermore, they should access blood glucose and ketone testing to identify patients at risk of diabetic ketoacidosis that require hospital admission.
How Randox can Help
Randox offer a range of assays to diagnosis and monitor diabetes and to monitor associated complications. Some of these tests are unique to Randox, including:
The Randox fructosamine assay employs the enzymatic method which offers improved specificity and reliability compared to conventional NBT-based methods. The Randox enzymatic method does not suffer from non-specific interferences unlike other commercially available fructosamine assays.
The Randox D-3-Hydroxybutyrate (Ranbut) assay detects the most abundant and sensitive ketone in the body, D-3-Hydroxybutyrate. The Randox Ranbut assay is used for the diagnosis of ketosis, more specifically diabetic ketoacidosis. Other commercially available tests, such as the nitroprusside method, are less sensitive as they only detect acetone and acetoacetate, not D-3-Hydroxybutyrate.
The Randox adiponectin assay is a biomarker in diabetes testing as adiponectin is a protein hormone responsible for regulating the metabolism of lipids and glucose and influences the body’s response to insulin. Adiponectin levels inversely correlates with abdominal visceral fat levels.
Want to know more?
Contact us or visit our Diabetes panel page to learn more.
 National Paediatric Diabetes Audit and Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, National Paediatric Diabetes Audit Report 2012-15: Part 2, 2017
 NHS, “Avoiding Complications” – Type 1 Diabetes, Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/type-1-diabetes/avoiding-complications/ [Accessed on 24th October 2018].
 “Potentially Preventable Pediatric Hospital Inpatient Stays for Asthma and Diabetes, 2003-2012”, www.hcup-us.ahrq.gov, 2015. [Online] Available: https://www.hcup-us.ahrq.gov/reports/statbriefs/sb192-Pediatric-Preventable-Hospitalizations-Asthma-Diabetes.jsp [Accessed 08-Nov-18]