Review: Serum C-reactive protein as a marker for wellness assessment

Pai C. Kao, Shu Chu Shiesh, Ta Jen Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

69 Citations (Scopus)


C-reactive protein (CRP), a nonspecific inflammatory marker, is widely used to monitor treatment of cardiovascular diseases (high serum CRP levels indicate poor outcome of heart disease). A healthy lifestyle decreases serum CRP levels, while obesity, physical inactivity, and smoking increase them. CRP, a stable pentameric protein, has a half-life of 19 hr, is not subject to diurnal variation, and can serve as a marker of wellness and a candidate for future direct access testing for people monitoring their health after adopting a healthier lifestyle. The CRP level may be influenced more by lifestyle than by genetics. Monozygotic twins may not have the same CRP level; within each twin pair, the one with higher adiposity generally has a higher CRP level than the one with low adiposity. Chronic diseases generally have a lower prevalence among Asians than among Westerners. Asians also have lower CRP levels than Westerners. In large population studies, the median CRP level of Asians is only one-tenth that of Westerners. Is there a factor in the lifestyle or diet of Asians that accounts for lower CRP levels? For example, a statin inhibitor of cholesterol synthesis occurs in red yeast rice, an important component of the Asian diet. In summary, CRP is a marker for monitoring cardiovascular therapy and assessing the wellness of the general population. Through improving health and preventing disease, CRP testing may help lower a nation's health costs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-169
Number of pages7
JournalAnnals of Clinical and Laboratory Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Mar

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Review: Serum C-reactive protein as a marker for wellness assessment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this