Volume 85, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 0002-9637
  • E-ISSN: 1476-1645



Pediatric reference intervals for biochemical tests are often derived from studies in Western countries and may not be applicable to the developing world. No such intervals exist for Melanesian populations. The aim of this study was to provide specific reference intervals for children from Papua New Guinea (PNG). We assayed plasma from 327 healthy Melanesian children living in Madang Province for common biochemical and hematological analytes. We used well-validated commercially available assay methodology. Compared with reference intervals from children from Western countries and/or African children, there were substantial differences in hemoglobin, soluble transferrin receptor, ferritin, calcium, phosphate, and C-reactive protein. Differences in the upper limits of reference intervals for bilirubin and alanine aminotransferase were also observed. Available reference intervals from Western and African countries may be inappropriate in PNG and other Melanesian countries. This has implications for clinical care and safety monitoring in pharmaceutical intervention trials and vaccine studies.


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  • Received : 15 Feb 2011
  • Accepted : 01 Mar 2011
  • Published online : 01 Jul 2011

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