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Disease Markers
Volume 28 (2010), Issue 6, Pages 333-342

Distribution of C-reactive Protein and Its Association with Cardiovascular Risk Factors in a Population-Based Sample of Chinese

Yanfang Zhao,1 Rui Wang,1 Xiuqiang Ma,1 Xiaoyan Yan,1 Zhansai Zhang,3 Xiang He,2 and Jia He1

1Department of Health Statistics, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, China
2Health Service Faculty, Second Military Medical University, Shanghai, China
3Institute of Health Inspection, Songjiang District, Shanghai, China

Received 16 July 2010; Accepted 16 July 2010

Copyright © 2010 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


C-reactive protein (CRP) levels vary remarkably with ethnic status. Its distribution and correlates should be investigated across diverse populations, and these were limited in a representative Chinese population. We investigated 3133 participants aged 18–80 years in Shanghai, which were sampled using a randomized, stratified, multi-stage sampling method. The distribution of CRP was highly skewed toward a lower level. The median CRP was 0.55 mg/L (0.61 mg/L in males, 0.51 mg/L in females). Participants living in urban region had higher CRP levels than those in rural region (0.67 vs. 0.46 mg/L). CRP levels showed significant correlation with traditional cardiovascular risk factors, and it was most strongly correlated with body mass index. Multivariate logistic regression analyses indicated that elevated CRP (being in the top 15 percentile of CRP; CRP ≥ 2.09 mg/L) was significantly associated with obesity, hypertension, diabetes, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, high low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, high triglycerides and cardiovascular disease history. In conclusion, the distribution of CRP in adult Chinese was comparable with that of many other Asian populations but different from that of Western populations. Metabolic impairment was associated with elevated CRP, and CRP levels should be interpreted in conjunction with the lipid profile.