Haptoglobin: A natural bacteriostat

John W. Eaton, Paul Brandt, John R. Mahoney, Janet T Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

212 Scopus citations


The combination of bacteria and blood in a wound can have lethal consequences, probably because hemoglobin iron supports prolific bacterial growth. Rats inoculated intraperitoneally with pathogenic Escherichia coli and small amounts of hemoglobin die. Simultaneous administration of haptoglobin, a naturally occurring hemoglobin-binding protein, fully protects against lethality. Therefore, haptoglobin may not only accelerate the clearance of free hemoglobin, but also limit its utilization by adventitious bacteria. Haptoglobin may have therapeutic potential in the treatment of life-threatening, hemoglobin-driven bacterial infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)691-693
Number of pages3
Issue number4533
StatePublished - 1982


Dive into the research topics of 'Haptoglobin: A natural bacteriostat'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this