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December 1958

Blood Plasma Pepsinogen in Acute Infections in Infants and Children

Author Affiliations

From the Pediatric and Biochemical Departments of the Jewish Hospital of Brooklyn and the Pediatric Department of the State University of New York College of Medicine, Downstate Medical Center. Research Fellows supported by a grant from the Desitin Chemical Company, Providence, R. I. (Mr. Elkan and Drs. Caviles, Schneck, and Garza).

AMA Am J Dis Child. 1958;96(6):676-684. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1958.02060060678004

At present, the physiologic and clinical significance of blood plasma pepsinogen is not known and awaits further investigation. Under normal conditions, in normal persons including infants and children,1-6 the blood plasma pepsinogen concentrations have been shown to vary within certain limits and to be independent of food, ordinary psychic influences, and practically all agents which usually stimulate or depress the gastric juice concentration of pepsinogen and pepsin. All the factors responsible for the magnitude of variability of blood plasma pepsinogen in the normal subjects are unknown. There is some circumstantial and inferential evidence that the anterior pituitary-adrenal cortical system may influence the production of the endogenous or endocrine fraction of pepsinogen by the peptic cells of the gastric mucosa3,7-25 and therefore the levels of blood plasma pepsinogen. Since in acute infections there may be anatomical or functional disturbances of the adrenal gland or both,26-30 it was thought

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