Serum β2-microglobulin measured by immunonephelometry: Expression patterns and reference intervals in healthy adults

Zoltán Mátrai, Júlia Németh, Katalin Miklós, Zsófia Szabó, Tamás Masszi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Serum β2-microglobulin (β2m) has been established as a marker of disease activity in malignancies, autoimmune conditions and infections. Despite its important role in prognosis assessment and disease monitoring, relatively few studies are available on its expression in healthy individuals. Furthermore, interpretation of results is hampered by the variety in reference limits due to differences in methodology, sample population and statistics. Methods: Serum β2m concentrations were measured using a microparticle-enhanced immunonephelometric method in 183 healthy blood donors aged 29-75 years. Results: The median β2m concentration was 1.67 (0.88-2.75) mg/L with no difference between men and women (1.71 mg/L vs. 1.62 mg/L, p<0.07). A linear correlation was found between β2m and age (p<0.0001), serum concentrations significantly higher in older subjects (1.55, 1.59, 1.70, and 1.87 mg/L in age groups of 29-40, 40-50, 50-60 and 60-75 years, respectively, p<0.0001). Reference intervals obtained by non-parametric estimation after partitioning by age were 1.02-2.46 mg/L vs. 1.29-2.70 mg/L in younger (29-49 years) vs. older (50-75 years) individuals. Conclusions: These data can help standardise β2m reference limits and support age-adjusted comparisons in clinical studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)585-589
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2009


  • Age
  • Immunonephelometry
  • Reference interval
  • β-microglobulin (β2m)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical

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