Blood eosinophil count as a prognostic biomarker in COPD

Yeon Mok Oh, Keu Sung Lee, Yoonki Hong, Sung Chul Hwang, Jae Yeol Kim, Deog Keom Kim, Kwang Ha Yoo, Ji Hyun Lee, Tae Hyung Kim, Seong Yong Lim, Chin Kook Rhee, Hyoung Kyu Yoon, Sang Yeub Lee, Yong Bum Park, Jin Hee Jung, Woo Jin Kim, Sang Do Lee, Joo Hun Park

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    20 Citations (Scopus)


    Background: High blood eosinophil count is a predictive biomarker for response to inhaled corticosteroids in prevention of acute exacerbation of COPD, and low blood eosinophil count is associated with pneumonia risk in COPD patients taking inhaled corticosteroids. However, the prognostic role of blood eosinophil count remains underexplored. Therefore, we investigated the associated factors and mortality based on blood eosinophil count in COPD. Methods: Patients with COPD were recruited from 16 hospitals of the Korean Obstructive Lung Disease cohort (n=395) and COPD in Dusty Area cohort (n=234) of Kangwon University Hospital. The two merged cohorts were divided based on blood eosinophil count into three groups: high (≥5%), middle (2%-5%), and low (<2%). Results: The high group had longer six-minute walk distance (high =445.8±81.4, middle =428.5±88.0, and low =414.7±86.3 m), higher body mass index (23.3±3.1, 23.1±3.1, and 22.5±3.2 kg/m2), lower emphysema index (18.5±14.1, 22.2±15.3, and 23.7±16.3), and higher inspiratory capacity/total lung capacity ratio (32.6±7.4, 32.4±9.2, and 29.9% ± 8.9%) (P<0.05). The survival period increased with increasing blood eosinophil count (high =9.52±0.23, middle =8.47±1.94, and low =7.42±0.27 years, P<0.05). Multivariate linear regression analysis revealed that the emphysema index was independently and negatively correlated with blood eosinophil count (P<0.05). Conclusion: In COPD, the severity of emphysema was independently linked with low blood eosinophil count and the longer survival period was associated with increased blood eosinophil count, though it was not proven in the multivariate analysis.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3589-3596
    Number of pages8
    JournalInternational Journal of COPD
    Publication statusPublished - 2018


    • Biomarker
    • Blood eosinophil
    • COPD

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
    • Health Policy
    • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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