Biomarkers: what is their benefit in the identification of infection, severity assessment, and management of community-acquired pneumonia?

Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2013 Mar;27(1):19-31. doi: 10.1016/j.idc.2012.11.003. Epub 2012 Dec 6.


Biomarkers have been proposed as tools that can guide the management of patients with community-acquired pneumonia, providing information that supplements the usually available clinical data. Among the available biomarkers, procalcitonin has been studied extensively and seems promising for several purposes. The use of biomarkers needs further study, to validate their utility in daily practice, especially given the limitations of the current tools for identifying the need for antibiotic therapy in patients with influenza and secondary bacterial pneumonia, in patients with aspiration syndromes, and in those infected with atypical pathogens.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Calcitonin / analysis
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide
  • Community-Acquired Infections / diagnosis
  • Community-Acquired Infections / drug therapy
  • Humans
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / diagnosis*
  • Pneumonia, Bacterial / drug therapy
  • Protein Precursors / analysis
  • Severity of Illness Index


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Biomarkers
  • CALCA protein, human
  • Protein Precursors
  • Calcitonin
  • Calcitonin Gene-Related Peptide