Decreased CTRP3 plasma concentrations are associated with sepsis and predict mortality in critically ill patients

Eray Yagmur, Simone Otto, Ger H. Koek, Ralf Weiskirchen, Christian Trautwein, Alexander Koch, Frank Tacke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


C1q/ tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-like protein 3 (CTRP3) represents a novel member of the adipokine family that exerts favorable metabolic actions in humans. However, the role of CTRP3 in critical illness and sepsis is currently unknown. Upon admission to the medical intensive care unit (ICU), we investigated CTRP3 plasma concentrations in 218 critically ill patients (145 with sepsis, 73 without sepsis). Results were compared with 66 healthy controls. CTRP3 plasma levels were significantly decreased in critically ill patients, when compared to healthy controls. In particular, low CTRP3 levels were highly associated with the presence of sepsis. CTRP3 levels were neither associated with obesity nor diabetes. In critically ill patients, CTRP3 plasma concentrations were inversely correlated with inflammatory cytokines and classical sepsis markers. Among a wide group of adipokines, CTRP3 only correlated with circulating resistin. Low CTRP3 plasma levels were associated with the overall mortality, and CTRP3 levels below 620.6 ng/mL indicated a particularly increased mortality risk in ICU patients. Our study demonstrates for the first time the role of circulating CTRP3 as a biomarker in critically ill patients that might facilitate diagnosis of sepsis as well as prognosis prediction. The association between low CTRP3 and increased inflammation warrants further pathophysiological investigations.

Original languageEnglish
Article number63
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Adipokine
  • C1q/TNF-related protein 3
  • CTRP3
  • Critical illness
  • Diabetes
  • Glucose metabolism
  • ICU
  • Inflammation
  • Insulin resistance
  • Sepsis


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