Tumour Necrosis Factor Alpha

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Overview Brief

The tumor necrosis factor alpha(TNFA) is a protein in our body which causes inflammation, which is required to fight infections in the body. This article explains the TNFA test, its use, methodology, risks, preparative measures and more.

What is TNFA?

TNFA test is a blood test that employs ELISA, a plate-based assay technique to detect and measure various substances in blood. If a person has high content of TNFA without any infection, it is indicative of other immune system disorders. Cachetin is another name for TNFA. Results of this test are prominently used for research purposes.

Why is TNFA suggested?

TNFA levels are elevated in a number of conditions and test may evaluate these.

  • When patient is suspected to have systemic infection.
  • When patient is suspected to have chronic inflammatory disorder.
  • To predict if an RA patient will respond to TNF inhibitors.

How is TNFA performed?

While performing TNFA test the specimen be freezed within 30 minutes.

  • Blood is taken and test-tube is placed on ice.
  • Plasma is separated by spinning.
  • It is added to assay plate which detects antibodies.
  • Buffer is then added.

Result of TNFA test from plate is read using high intensity of light.

What are the parameters measured in TNFA?

TNFA test takes the following into account.

  • Concentration of TNFA proteins whose elevation indicates inflammatory reaction.
  • IFN-beta/IFN-alpha ratio in some cases related to RA.

Preparation before performing TNFA

Before going for TNFA test ascertain the purpose of test with your doctor. You may,

  • Eat and drink normally before test.
  • Stay relaxed before TNFA test.
  • Inform your doctor of any underlying conditions for specific instructions.

Post-care after TNFA

As only blood is taken, no special post-care is required after TNFA test. You may,

  • Leave in its place the dressing strip.
  • Take rest.

Sample types in Tumour Necrosis Factor Alpha

The sample for TNFA is to be frozen or refrigerated immediately.

  • Serum or Plasma EDTA about 0.5 ml[1]

Side effects/risks of TNFA?

TNFA test has no specific side effects of its own whereas those of an improper blood test can be taken into account.

  • Bruising
  • Discomfort
  • Mood changes

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