Alpha-fetoprotein

Last revised by Dr Yuranga Weerakkody on 13 Jun 2022

Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) is an important plasma protein synthesized by the yolk sac and fetal liver. In adults, its main utility is as a tumor marker, primarily for hepatocellular carcinoma or teratoma. Functionally it is the fetal homologue of albumin i.e. it acts as a major carrier protein in the antenatal circulation. It is encoded by the AFP gene 1.

Interpretation

Elevation

This may occur in a broad spectrum of conditions:

Reduction

This may be seen in pregnancy. 

AFP reduction may be associated with: 

See also

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