Protein in the serum is made up of albumin (∼ 60%) and globulin. Together with albumin, globulin forms the total protein level on a blood test lab report. It includes carrier proteins, enzymes, clotting factors, and, predominantly, antibodies.
Globulin is categorized into three main groups:
- alpha globulins
- beta globulins
- gamma globulins
While alpha globulins and beta globulins are primarily transport proteins, gamma globulins are mainly comprised of immunoglobulins (Igs), also known as antibodies.
Beta globulin has a target range of 0.7 – 1.3 g/dL.
Increased Beta Globulins:
- Hypercholesterolemia (which can occur by itself or in association with biliary cirrhosis, hypothyroidism, or nephrosis): Beta lipoprotein is a beta globulin and is increased in hypercholesterolemia.
- Iron-deficiency anemia: Transferrin is a beta globulin and is increased in this form of anemia.
- Estrogen therapy: Estrogen causes increased production of these proteins.
Decreased Beta Globulins:
- Malnutrition: Transferrin is a beta globulin and is decreased in malnutrition.
- Consumptive coagulopathy: Several proteins used in the coagulation process are beta globulins. They are consumed in disorders of unrestricted coagulation.
Serum Albumin and Globulin, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK204/
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