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Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (CCLM)

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Cystatin C: current position and future prospects

Sophie Séronie-Vivien
  • 1Département de Biologie Clinique, Institut Claudius Regaud, Université Paul Sabatier, Toulouse, France
/ Pierre Delanaye
  • 2Université de Liège, Service de Néphrologie-Dialyse, CHU Sart Tilman, Liège, Belgium
/ Laurence Piéroni
  • 3Service de Biochimie Métabolique, Groupe Hospitalier Pitié-Salpétrière, AP-HP, Paris, France
/ Christophe Mariat
  • 4Service de Néphrologie, Dialyse et Transplantation Rénale, CHU de Saint-Etienne, Saint-Etienne, France
/ Marc Froissart
  • 5Service de Physiologie, Hôpital Européen Georges Pompidou, AP-HP and Faculté de Médecine, Université Paris Descartes, Paris, France
/ Jean-Paul Cristol
  • 6Laboratoire de Biochimie, Centre Hospitalo-Universitaire, Montpellier, France


Cystatin C is a low-molecular-weight protein which has been proposed as a marker of renal function that could replace creatinine. Indeed, the concentration of cystatin C is mainly determined by glomerular filtration and is particularly of interest in clinical settings where the relationship between creatinine production and muscle mass impairs the clinical performance of creatinine. Since the last decade, numerous studies have evaluated its potential use in measuring renal function in various populations. More recently, other potential developments for its clinical use have emerged. This review summarises current knowledge about the physiology of cystatin C and about its use as a renal marker, either alone or in equations developed to estimate the glomerular filtration rate. This paper also reviews recent data about the other applications of cystatin C, particularly in cardiology, oncology and clinical pharmacology.

Clin Chem Lab Med 2008;46:1664–86.

Keywords: cancer; cardiovascular risk; chronic renal failure; creatinine; cystatin C; glomerular filtration rate

Corresponding author: Sophie Séronie-Vivien, Département de Biologie Clinique, Institut Claudius Regaud (CRLCC Midi-Pyrénées), 20–24 rue du Pont St. Pierre, 31052, Toulouse Cedex, France Phone: +33-5-61424221, Fax: +33-5-61424631,

Received: 2008-05-26

Accepted: 2008-08-18

Published in Print: 2008-12-01

Published in Print: 2008-10-31

Citation Information: Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine. Volume 46, Issue 12, Pages 1664–1686, ISSN (Online) 1437-4331, ISSN (Print) 1434-6621, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/CCLM.2008.336, December 2008

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