C-reactive protein (CRP) is an acute phase protein and it is mainly produced by the liver. Serum concentration of CRP increases significantly in cases of both infectious and noninfectious inflammation caused by of tissue damage, necrosis and in the presence of malignant tumours.
In patients with type 2 diabetes, low grade inflammation is reflected by increased plasma levels of several biomarkers of inflammation including CRP. Small increases in CRP predict the likelihood of developing cardiovascular events both in diabetic and nondiabetic populations. In addition, in apparently healthy subjects, increased levels of CRP predict the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
CRP is also present in the active stages of inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, Reiter’s syndrome, psoriatic arthropathy, systemic lupus erythematosus, polyarteritis, ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
The CRP level increases dramatically following microbial infections, and this can be particularly helpful for the diagnosis and monitoring of bacterial septicemia in neonates and other immunocompromised patients at risk.