Alpha-fetoprotein

Last revised by Dr Daniel J Bell on 02 Mar 2021

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.

Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) elevation 

This may occur in a broad spectrum of conditions:

Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) reduction

This may be seen in pregnancy. 

AFP reduction may be associated with: 

See also

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