Study: Evaluation of cachectin level in preterm neonates as
Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) is an inflammatory disorder that affects the gastrointestinal system of the preterm infants (gestational age less than 37 weeks). A Study was conducted to evaluate the level of blood cachectin (TNF-alpha) in preterm neonates as an indicator for NEC.

The present study was designed as an analytical cross-sectional study that included two groups:
i) Preterm neonates with necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) admitted at neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) (n = 25), and
ii) Healthy preterm neonates (n = 25) who served as a normal control group.
All neonates subjected to prenatal, natal and postnatal history, Physical examination, and blood samples were taken from cases once diagnosed as suspected NEC, proven NEC, or advanced NEC and from healthy preterm neonates when taking full oral feeding as a control. Then, measurement of cachectin level was done by ELISA kits.

--It was found that neonates with necrotizing enterocolitis had significantly higher cachectin level than healthy controls and was also found that cachectin (TNF-alpha) levels are higher in NEC patients with complications.

--It was also found that cachectin (TNF-alpha) level of 116.6 was the best cut-off points with sensitivity of 92% and specificity of 90% for prediction of NEC among preterm neonates.

In conclusion, serum cachectin levels are higher in newborns with NEC than in healthy preterm neonates, and it can be utilized as an early indicator of NEC.