Postnatal changes in the ability of plasma albumin to bind bilirubin

Acta Paediatr Scand. 1983 Sep;72(5):665-70. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.1983.tb09791.x.


The plasma concentrations of total albumin, unconjugated bilirubin and reserve albumin for bilirubin binding were determined in 407 healthy infants of various age up to eight days. The albumin reserve was measured using monoacetyldiaminodiphenyl-sulfone (MADDS) as a deputy ligand for bilirubin. The fraction of albumin capable of binding bilirubin was calculated as the sum of the concentrations of bilirubin and reserve albumin, divided by the total albumin concentration. Our data showed that this fraction was low (average 0.36) and did not change during the first 24 hours of life, and in this period it was independent of the maturity of the infant, as expressed by its birth weight or gestational age. From about 24 hours of life, the fraction began to increase. This increase came to an end about 60 hours after birth, and no further changes were seen during the following five days. The level of the bilirubin-binding fraction reached 60 hours after birth was related to the maturity of the infant: It increased with increasing birth weight up to 3000 g and with increasing gestational age up to 275 days, when on an average it was about 0.58. The fraction of binding albumin was independent of the sex.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bilirubin / blood*
  • Birth Weight
  • Female
  • Gestational Age
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn*
  • Male
  • Serum Albumin / metabolism*
  • Sex Factors


  • Serum Albumin
  • Bilirubin