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Plasma levels of active ghrelin until 8 weeks after birth in preterm infants: relationship with anthropometric and biochemical measures
  1. T Shimizu,
  2. T Kitamura,
  3. N Yoshikawa,
  4. H Suganuma,
  5. K Hisata,
  6. K Tanaka,
  7. K Shinohara,
  8. Y Yamashiro
  1. Department of Pediatrics, Juntendo University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan
  1. Correspondence to:
    T Shimizu
    Department of Pediatrics, Juntendo University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan; tsimizut{at}


This study investigated the relationship between plasma levels of ghrelin and postnatal growth in preterm infants. The levels of active ghrelin in cord blood and in plasma in 25 very low birthweight (VLBW) infants were measured. The results indicate that the levels of circulating active ghrelin markedly increases after birth in VLBW infants, and suggest that the increased levels of ghrelin reflects the maturation of ghrelin production in the stomach and an increased physiological need for ghrelin.

  • AGA, appropriate for gestational age
  • BMI, body mass index
  • IGF-1, insulin-like growth factor-I
  • SGA, small for gestational age
  • VLBW infants, very low birthweight infants
  • ghrelin
  • growth
  • insulin like growth factor-I
  • leptin
  • preterm infant

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  • Published Online First 9 January 2007

  • Competing interests: None.