Blood biochemistry: total globulin

TGG

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Overview

  • Contains alpha-, beta- and gamma-globulin fractions.
  • Alpha- and beta- further subdivided into alpha-1 and -2 and beta-1 and -2.
  • Total gobulin is a calculated result ([ total protein] minus [albumin] = total globulin).
  • Examination of individual fractions following electrophoretic separation more specific [Serum protein electrophoresis].

Uses

In combination

  • Immunodeficiency.
  • Monoclonal gammopathies.
  • Acute, subacute and chronic inflammation.
  • Auto-immune disease.

Result data

Normal (reference) values



UK
  • 24-45 g/l.
US
  • 2.4-4.5 g/dl.
  • Conversion factor: g/dl x 10 → g/l.

Abnormal values



Increased total globulin (decreased A-G ratio)
  • Acute tissue injury, inflammation and fever → often see increased alpha- (and possibly beta-) globulin; (+?beta-2 due to fibrinogen (plasma)).
  • Subacute inflammation (especially bacterial) → often see increased alpha- and gamma-globulin.
  • Chronic inflammation → often see increased gamma-globulin + beta-2 due to fibrinogen (plasma).
  • Chronic active hepatitis → often see increased beta-2- and gamma-1-globulin.
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus → often see increased gamma-globulin.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis → often see increased alpha- and gamma-globulin.
  • Glomerulonephritis and amyloidosis → often see increased alpha-, beta- and gamma-globulin.
  • Leishmaniasis (imported dog) [Leishmania infantum]→ often see increased gamma-globulin.
  • Monoclonal gammopathy in plasma cell myeloma → increase in gamma-globulin with characteristic steep narrow peak on electrophoresis.
  • Internal abscess → alpha-2 and often see gamma-globulins.
Decreased globulin (increased A-G ratio)

Errors and Artifacts

  • Value calculated by difference in total protein and albumin values - therefore dependent on accurate determination of these values.
  • Hemolysis → increases alpha-2 and beta-globulin fractions.


Neonates
  • Transient increase due to colostral gamma-globulins.
  • Hypogammaglobulinemia normal in colostrum-deprived neonatal animals.
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