Kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1) is a specific histological biomarker for diagnosing early tubular injury on renal biopsies. In this study, KIM-1 expression was quantitated in renal transplant biopsies by immunohistochemistry and correlated with renal function. None of the 25 protocol biopsies showed detectable tubular injury on histologic examination, yet 28% had focal positive KIM-1 expression. Proximal tubule KIM-1 expression was present in all biopsies from patients with histological changes showing acute tubular damage and deterioration of kidney function. In this group, higher KIM-1 staining predicted a better outcome with improved blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum creatinine, and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) over an ensuing 18 months. KIM-1 was expressed focally in affected tubules in 92% of kidney biopsies from patients with acute cellular rejection. By contrast, there was little positive staining for Ki-67, a cell proliferation marker, in any of the groups. KIM-1 expression significantly correlated with serum creatinine and BUN, and inversely with the eGFR on the biopsy day. Our study shows that KIM-1 staining sensitively and specifically identified proximal tubular injury and correlated with the degree of renal dysfunction. KIM-1 expression is more sensitive than histology for detecting early tubular injury, and its level of expression in transplant biopsies may indicate the potential for recovery of kidney function.
kidney injury molecule-1; renal tubular injury; biomarker; renal transplantation
Sensitive biomarkers are needed to detect kidney injury at the earliest stages. The objective of this study was to determine whether the appearance of kidney injury molecule-1 (Kim-1) protein ectodomain in urine and kidney injury molecule-1/hepatitis A viral cellular receptor-1 (Kim-1/Havcr1) gene expression in kidney tissue may be more predictive of renal injury after exposure to nephrotoxicants when compared to traditionally used biomarkers. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were injected with a range of doses of gentamicin, mercury (Hg; HgCl2), or chromium (Cr; K2Cr2O7). The results showed that increases in urinary Kim-1 and kidney Kim-1/Havcr1 gene expression paralleled the degree of severity of renal histopathology and were detected at lower doses of nephrotoxicants when compared to blood urea nitrogen (BUN), serum creatinine, and urinary N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG). In a time course study, urinary Kim-1 was elevated within 24 h after exposure to gentamicin (100 mg/kg), Hg (0.25 mg/kg), or Cr (5 mg/kg) and remained elevated through 72 h. NAG responses were nephrotoxicant dependent with elevations occurring early (gentamicin), late (Cr), or no change (Hg). At 72 h, after treatment with any of the three nephrotoxicants, there was increased Kim-1 immunoreactivity and necrosis involving ∼50% of the proximal tubules; however, only urinary Kim-1 was significantly increased, while BUN, serum creatinine, and NAG were not different from controls. In rats treated with the hepatotoxicant galactosamine (1.1 mg/kg), serum alanine aminotransferase was increased, but no increase in urinary Kim-1 was observed. Urinary Kim-1 and kidney Kim-1/Havcr1 expression appear to be sensitive and tissue-specific biomarkers that will improve detection of early acute kidney injury following exposure to nephrotoxic chemicals and drugs.
acute kidney injury; nephrotoxicity biomarkers; kidney injury molecule-1; mercury; chromium; gentamicin
Acute kidney injury predisposes patients to the development of both chronic kidney disease and end-stage renal failure, but the molecular details underlying this important clinical association remain obscure. We report that kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1), an epithelial phosphatidylserine receptor expressed transiently after acute injury and chronically in fibrotic renal disease, promotes kidney fibrosis. Conditional expression of KIM-1 in renal epithelial cells (Kim1RECtg) in the absence of an injury stimulus resulted in focal epithelial vacuolization at birth, but otherwise normal tubule histology and kidney function. By 4 weeks of age, Kim1RECtg mice developed spontaneous and progressive interstitial kidney inflammation with fibrosis, leading to renal failure with anemia, proteinuria, hyperphosphatemia, hypertension, cardiac hypertrophy, and death, analogous to progressive kidney disease in humans. Kim1RECtg kidneys had elevated expression of proinflammatory monocyte chemotactic protein-1 (MCP-1) at early time points. Heterologous expression of KIM-1 in an immortalized proximal tubule cell line triggered MCP-1 secretion and increased MCP-1–dependent macrophage chemotaxis. In mice expressing a mutant, truncated KIM-1 polypeptide, experimental kidney fibrosis was ameliorated with reduced levels of MCP-1, consistent with a profibrotic role for native KIM-1. Thus, sustained KIM-1 expression promotes kidney fibrosis and provides a link between acute and recurrent injury with progressive chronic kidney disease.
Kidney injury molecule-1 (Kim-1) has been qualified by the Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency as a highly sensitive and specific urinary biomarker to monitor drug-induced kidney injury in preclinical studies and on a case-by-case basis in clinical trials. Here we report the development and evaluation of a rapid direct immunochromatographic lateral flow 15-min assay for detection of urinary Kim-1 (rat) or KIM-1 (human). The urinary Kim-1 band intensity using the rat Kim-1 dipstick significantly correlated with levels of Kim-1 as measured by a microbead-based assay, histopathological damage, and immunohistochemical assessment of renal Kim-1 in a dose- and time-dependent manner. Kim-1 was detected following kidney injury induced in rats by cadmium, gentamicin, or bilateral renal ischemia/reperfusion. In humans, the urinary KIM-1 band intensity was significantly greater in urine from patients with acute kidney injury than in urine from healthy volunteers. The KIM-1 dipstick also enabled temporal evaluation of kidney injury and recovery in two patients who developed postoperative acute kidney injury following cytoreductive surgery for malignant mesothelioma with intraoperative local cisplatin administration. We hope that future, more extensive studies will confirm the utility of these results, which show that the Kim-1/KIM-1 dipsticks can provide a sensitive and accurate detection of Kim-1/KIM-1, thereby providing a rapid diagnostic assay for kidney damage and facilitating the rapid and early detection of kidney injury in preclinical and clinical studies.
biomarkers; cadmium; dipstick; ischemia/reperfusion injury; kidney toxicity; Kim-1
Cadmium (Cd) exposure results in injury to the proximal tubule characterized by polyuria and proteinuria. Kidney injury molecule-1 (Kim-1) is a transmembrane glycoprotein not normally detected in the mature kidney, but is upregulated and shed into the urine following nephrotoxic injury. In this study, we determine if Kim-1 might be a useful early biomarker of Cd nephrotoxicity. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were given daily injections of Cd for up to 12 weeks. Weekly urine samples were analyzed for Kim-1, protein, creatinine, metallothionein, and Clara cell protein CC-16. Significant levels of Kim-1 were detected in the urine by 6 weeks and continued to increase throughout the treatment period. This appearance of Kim-1 occurred 4-5 weeks before the onset of proteinuria, and 1-3 weeks before the appearance of metallothionein and CC-16. Higher doses of Cd gave rise to higher Kim-1 excretion. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) expression analysis showed that Kim-1 transcript levels were increased after 6 weeks at the low dose of Cd. Immunohistochemical analysis showed that Kim-1 was present in proximal tubule cells of the Cd-treated rats. Our results suggest that Kim-1 may be a useful biomarker of early stages of Cd-induced proximal tubule injury.
biomarkers; cadmium; Kim-1; nephrotoxicity; Clara cell protein (CC-16); metallothionein
Tubulointerstitial damage plays an important role in chronic kidney disease (CKD) with proteinuria. Urinary kidney injury molecule 1 (KIM-1) reflects tubular KIM-1 and is considered a sensitive biomarker for early tubular damage. We hypothesized that a decrease in proteinuria by using therapeutic interventions is associated with decreased urinary KIM-1 levels.
Post hoc analysis of a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial.
Setting & Participants
34 proteinuric patients without diabetes from our outpatient renal clinic.
Stepwise 6-week interventions of losartan, sodium restriction (low-sodium [LS] diet), their combination, losartan plus hydrochlorothiazide (HCT), and the latter plus an LS diet.
Outcomes & Measurements
Urinary excretion of KIM-1, total protein, and N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG) as a positive control for tubular injury.
Mean baseline urine protein level was 3.8 ± 0.4 (SE) g/d, and KIM-1 level was 1,706 ± 498 ng/d (increased compared with healthy controls; 74 ng/d). KIM-1 level was decreased by using placebo/LS (1,201 ± 388 ng/d; P = 0.04), losartan/high sodium (1,184 ± 296 ng/d; P = 0.09), losartan/LS (921 ± 176 ng/d; P = 0.008), losartan/high sodium plus HCT (862 ± 151 ng/d; P = 0.008) and losartan/LS plus HCT (743 ± 170 ng/d; P = 0.001). The decrease in urinary KIM-1 levels paralleled the decrease in proteinuria (R = 0.523; P < 0.001), but not blood pressure or creatinine clearance. 16 patients reached target proteinuria with protein less than 1 g/d, whereas KIM-1 levels normalized in only 2 patients. Urinary NAG level was increased at baseline and significantly decreased during the treatment periods of combined losartan plus HCT only. The decrease in urinary NAG levels was not closely related to proteinuria.
Post hoc analysis.
Urinary KIM-1 level was increased in patients with nondiabetic CKD with proteinuria and decreased in parallel with proteinuria by using losartan, sodium restriction, their combination, losartan plus HCT, and the latter plus sodium restriction. These results are consistent with the hypothesis of amelioration of proteinuria-induced tubular damage. Long-term studies are warranted to evaluate whether targeting treatment on KIM-1 can improve outcomes in patients with CKD with proteinuria.
Renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system; losartan; angiotensin II type 1 receptor blockade; proteinuria; interstitial renal damage; kidney injury molecule 1; N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase; tubular damage marker; biomarker
Following injury, the clearance of apoptotic and necrotic cells is necessary for mitigation and resolution of inflammation and tissue repair. In addition to macrophages, which are traditionally assigned to this task, neighboring epithelial cells in the affected tissue are postulated to contribute to this process. Kidney injury molecule–1 (KIM-1 or TIM-1) is an immunoglobulin superfamily cell-surface protein not expressed by cells of the myeloid lineage but highly upregulated on the surface of injured kidney epithelial cells. Here we demonstrate that injured kidney epithelial cells assumed attributes of endogenous phagocytes. Confocal images confirm internalization of apoptotic bodies within KIM-1–expressing epithelial cells after injury in rat kidney tubules in vivo. KIM-1 was directly responsible for phagocytosis in cultured primary rat tubule epithelial cells and also porcine and canine epithelial cell lines. KIM-1 was able to specifically recognize apoptotic cell surface-specific epitopes phosphatidylserine, and oxidized lipoproteins, expressed by apoptotic tubular epithelial cells. Thus, KIM-1 is the first nonmyeloid phosphatidylserine receptor identified to our knowledge that transforms epithelial cells into semiprofessional phagocytes.
Cadmium (Cd) is a nephrotoxic industrial and environmental pollutant that causes a generalized dysfunction of the proximal tubule. Kim-1 is a transmembrane glycoprotein that is normally not detectable in non-injured kidney, but is up-regulated and shed into the urine during the early stages of Cd-induced proximal tubule injury. The objective of the present study was to examine the relationship between the Cd-induced increase in Kim-1 expression and the onset of necrotic and apoptotic cell death in the proximal tubule. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were treated with 0.6 mg (5.36 μmoles) Cd/kg, subcutaneously, 5 days per week for up to 12 weeks. Urine samples were analyzed for levels of Kim-1 and the enzymatic markers of cell death, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and alpha-glutathione-S-transferase (α-GST). In addition, necrotic cells were specifically labeled by perfusing the kidneys in situ with ethidium homodimer using a procedure that has been recently developed and validated in the Prozialeck laboratory. Cryosections of the kidneys were also processed for the immunofluorescent visualization of Kim-1 and the identification of apoptotic cells by TUNEL labeling. Results showed that significant levels of Kim-1 began to appear in the urine after 6 weeks of Cd treatment, whereas the levels of total protein, α-GST and LDH were not increased until 8–12 weeks. Results of immunofluorescence labeling studies showed that after 6 weeks and 12 weeks, Kim-1 was expressed in the epithelial cells of the proximal tubule, but that there was no increase in the number of necrotic cells, and only a modest increase in the number of apoptotic cells at 12 weeks. These results indicate that the Cd-induced increase in Kim-1 expression occurs before the onset of necrosis and at a point where there is only a modest level of apoptosis in the proximal tubule.
cadmium; Kim-1; necrosis; apoptosis; proximal tubule
Obesity is associated with glomerular hyperfiltration, increased proximal tubular sodium reabsorption, glomerular enlargement and renal hypertrophy. A single experimental study reported an increased glomerular urinary space in obese dogs. Whether proximal tubular volume is increased in obese subjects and whether their glomerular and tubular urinary spaces are enlarged is unknown.
To determine whether proximal tubules and glomerular and tubular urinary space are enlarged in obese subjects with proteinuria and glomerular hyperfiltration.
Kidney biopsies from 11 non-diabetic obese with proteinuria and 14 non-diabetic lean patients with a creatinine clearance above 50 ml/min and with mild or no interstitial fibrosis were retrospectively analyzed using morphometric methods. The cross-sectional area of the proximal tubular epithelium and lumen, the volume of the glomerular tuft and of Bowman’s space and the nuclei number per tubular profile were estimated.
Creatinine clearance was higher in the obese than in the lean group (P=0.03). Proteinuria was similarly increased in both groups. Compared to the lean group, the obese group displayed a 104% higher glomerular tuft volume (P=0.001), a 94% higher Bowman’s space volume (P=0.003), a 33% higher cross-sectional area of the proximal tubular epithelium (P=0.02) and a 54% higher cross-sectional area of the proximal tubular lumen (P=0.01). The nuclei number per proximal tubular profile was similar in both groups, suggesting that the increase in tubular volume is due to hypertrophy and not to hyperplasia.
Obesity-related glomerular hyperfiltration is associated with proximal tubular epithelial hypertrophy and increased glomerular and tubular urinary space volume in subjects with proteinuria. The expanded glomerular and urinary space is probably a direct consequence of glomerular hyperfiltration. These effects may be involved in the pathogenesis of obesity-related renal disease.
With more marginal deceased donors affecting graft viability, there is a need for specific parameters to assess kidney graft quality at the time of organ procurement in the deceased donor. Recently, kidney injury molecule-1 (Kim-1) was described as an early biomarker of renal proximal tubular damage. We assessed Kim-1 in a small animal brain death model as an early and noninvasive marker for donor-derived injury related to brain death and its sequelae, with subsequent confirmation in human donors.
In rat kidney, real-time PCR revealed a 46-fold Kim-1 gene upregulation after 4 h of brain death. In situ hybridization showed proximal tubular Kim-1 localization, which was confirmed by immunohistochemistry. Also, Luminex assay showed a 6.6-fold Kim-1 rise in urine after 4 h of brain death. In human donors, 2.5-fold kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1) gene upregulation and 2-fold higher urine levels were found in donation after brain death (DBD) donors compared to living kidney donors. Multiple regression analysis showed that urinary KIM-1 at brain death diagnosis was a positive predictor of recipient serum creatinine, 14 days (p < 0.001) and 1 year (p < 0.05) after kidney transplantation.
In conclusion, we think that Kim-1 is a promising novel marker for the early, organ specific and noninvasive detection of brain death-induced donor kidney damage.
Brain death; donor evaluation; kidney; KIM-1
Human kidney injury molecule-1 (hKIM-1) is a type 1 transmembrane protein that is not detectable in normal kidney tissue but is expressed at high levels in human and rodent kidneys with dedifferentiated proximal tubule epithelial cells after ischemic or toxic injury. Therefore, it was hypothesized that renal tumors express hKIM-1 and release this protein into the urine. Forty renal cell carcinoma (RCC) and 484 nonrenal tumors were analyzed by immunohistochemistry for expression of hKIM-1 (group 1). Urine samples before nephrectomy and nephrectomy tissue samples were collected from an additional 42 patients with renal tumors, from 30 normal control subjects, and also from 10 patients with prostate carcinoma (group 2). In five additional patients with RCC, urine was collected before and after nephrectomy (group 3). Tissue was examined for expression of hKIM-1, and cell-free urine supernatants were analyzed for hKIM-1 by ELISA. Urinary hKIM-1 was normalized to the urinary creatinine concentration (UCr). Expression of hKIM-1 was present in 32 tissue sections (91%) of 35 clear cell RCC (group 1). In group 2, the normalized urinary hKIM-1 levels were significantly higher in patients with clear cell RCC (0.39 ± 0.08 ng/mg UCr; n = 21), compared with levels in patients with prostate carcinoma (0.12 ± 0.03 ng/mg UCr; P < 0.02; n = 10), or normal control subjects (0.05 ± 0.01 ng/mg UCr; P < 0.005; n = 30). Tissue sections from 28 (82%) of 34 primary RCC stained positively for the expression of hKIM-1. In all patients with a detectable prenephrectomy urinary hKIM-1 level, there was either complete disappearance or marked reduction after nephrectomy (group 3). In conclusion, the cleaved ectodomain of hKIM-1 can be detected in the urine of patients with RCC and may serve as a new biomarker for early detection of RCC.
The role of podocytes in the development and progression of glomerular disease has been extensively investigated in the past decade. However, the importance of glomerular endothelial cells in the pathogenesis of proteinuria and glomerulosclerosis has been largely ignored. Recent studies have demonstrated that endothelial nitric oxide synthatase (eNOS) deficiency exacerbates renal injury in anti-GBM and remnant kidney models and accelerates diabetic kidney damage. Increasing evidence also demonstrates the importance of the glomerular endothelium in preventing proteinuria. We hypothesize that endothelial dysfunction can initiate and promote the development and progression of glomerulopathy. Administration of adriamycin (ADR) to C57BL/6 mice, normally an ADR resistant strain, with an eNOS deficiency induced overt proteinuria, severe glomerulosclerosis, interstitial fibrosis and inflammation. We also examined glomerular endothelial cell and podocyte injury in ADR-induced nephropathy in Balb/c mice, an ADR susceptible strain, by immunostaining, TUNEL and Western blotting. Interestingly, down-regulation of eNOS and the appearance of apoptotic glomerular endothelial cells occurred as early as 24 hours after ADR injection, whilst synaptopodin, a functional podocyte marker, was reduced 7 days after ADR injection and coincided with a significant increase in the number of apoptotic podocytes. Furthermore, conditioned media from mouse microvascular endothelial cells over-expressing GFP-eNOS protected podocytes from TNF-α-induced loss of synaptopodin. In conclusion, our study demonstrated that endothelial dysfunction and damage precedes podocyte injury in ADR-induced nephropathy. Glomerular endothelial cells may protect podocytes from inflammatory insult. Understanding the role of glomerular endothelial dysfunction in the development of kidney disease will facilitate in the design of novel strategies to treat kidney disease.
In the past decade, podocyte research has been greatly aided by the development of powerful new molecular, cellular and animal tools, leading to elucidation of an increasing number of proteins involved in podocyte function and identification of mutated genes in hereditary glomerulopathies. Accumulating evidence indicates that podocyte disorders may not only underlie these hereditary glomerulopathies but also play crucial role in a broad spectrum of acquired glomerular diseases. Genetic susceptibility, environmental influence and systemic responses are all involved in the mediation of the pathogenesis of podocytopathies. Injured podocytes may predisopose to further injury of other podocytes and other adjacent/distant renal cells in a vicious cycle, leading to inexorable progression of glomerular injury. The classic view is that podocytes have a limited ability to proliferate in the normal mature kidney. However, recent research in rodents has provided suggestive evidence for podocyte regeneration resulting from differentiation of progenitor cells within Bowman’s capsule.
podocyte; foot process effacement; slit diaphragms; hereditary proteinuria syndrome; acquired glomerular diseases; VEGF; progenitor cells; FSGS; diabetic nephropathy and kidney
Background. Renal calcium oxalate (CaOx) crystal deposition is associated with epithelial injury and movement of inflammatory cells into the interstitium. We have proposed that oxalate (Ox)- and CaOx crystal-induced injury is most likely caused by reactive oxygen species (ROS) produced by activation of membrane nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate (NADPH) oxidase.
Methods. Present study was undertaken to determine the effect of NADPH oxidase inhibitor apocynin on the expression of kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1) and renal CaOx crystal deposition in rats with hyperoxaluria. We also investigated the urinary excretion of KIM-1, osteopontin (OPN) and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1) and renal expression of OPN and ED-1. Male Sprague–Dawley rats were fed a diet containing 5% hydroxyl-L-proline (HLP) and 4 mmol apocynin to drink for 28 days. Urine was collected on Days 7, 14, 21 and 28. After that, rats were sacrificed and their kidneys processed for various microscopic and molecular investigations.
Results. HLP consumption produced heavy deposits of CaOx crystals. Renal expression of KIM-1 and OPN and urinary excretion of KIM-1, OPN, H2O2 and MCP-1 was significantly increased. ED-1-positive cells migrated into renal interstitium. Apocynin treatment caused significant reduction of crystal deposits, injured and dilated tubules; renal expression of KIM-1, OPN and ED-1 and urinary excretion of KIM-1, OPN, MCP-1 and H2O2. Apocynin had no effect on the urinary excretion of Ox.
Conclusions. This is the first study of urinary excretion and renal expression of KIM-1 in association with renal CaOx crystal deposition, experimental or clinical. The results indicate that NADPH oxidase inhibition leads to reduction in KIM-1 expression and urinary excretion as well as renal CaOx crystal deposition. KIM-1 is an important marker of renal epithelial injury. The results provide further support to our proposal that renal epithelial injury is critical for crystal retention and that injury is in part caused by the production of ROS with the involvement of NADPH oxidase.
apocynin; calcium oxalate; kidney injury molecule-1; kidney stones; NADPH oxidase; oxalate; oxidative stress
Glomerular diseases account for 90% of end-stage kidney disease. Podocyte loss is a common determining factor for the progression toward glomerulosclerosis. Mature podocytes cannot proliferate, but recent evidence suggests that they can be replaced by renal progenitors localized within the Bowman's capsule. Here, we demonstrate that Notch activation in human renal progenitors stimulates entry into the S-phase of the cell cycle and cell division, whereas its downregulation is required for differentiation toward the podocyte lineage. Indeed, a persistent activation of the Notch pathway induced podocytes to cross the G2/M checkpoint, resulting in cytoskeleton disruption and death by mitotic catastrophe. Notch expression was virtually absent in the glomeruli of healthy adult kidneys, while a strong upregulation was observed in renal progenitors and podocytes in patients affected by glomerular disorders. Accordingly, inhibition of the Notch pathway in mouse models of focal segmental glomerulosclerosis ameliorated proteinuria and reduced podocyte loss during the initial phases of glomerular injury, while inducing reduction of progenitor proliferation during the regenerative phases of glomerular injury with worsening of proteinuria and glomerulosclerosis. Taken altogether, these results suggest that the severity of glomerular disorders depends on the Notch-regulated balance between podocyte death and regeneration provided by renal progenitors. Stem Cells 2010; 28:1674–1685.
Renal stem cells; Renal progenitors; Glomerulosclerosis; Kidney; Glomerulonephritis
Cadmium (Cd) has been found as an environmental pollutant in Mae Sot district, Tak province, Thailand. Prolong exposure to high levels of Cd of the resident increases high risk of Cd toxicity especially to kidney which is the primary target of Cd. In order to investigate the early effect of Cd induced renal dysfunction, a kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1), a novel biomarker of renal tubular dysfunction, was measured using an enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The method was validated and used to quantify the KIM-1 concentrations in the urine of 700 subjects (260 men, 440 women) who lived in the Cd contaminated area. The KIM-1 concentrations were compared to the concentrations of two conventional renal tubular dysfunction biomarkers, N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG) and β2-microglobulin (β2-MG). Urinary KIM-1 was correlated with urinary and blood Cd as well as NAG. After adjustment of age and smoking, urinary KIM-1 was correlated with blood Cd more than urinary NAG did. Clear dose response relationships of urinary KIM-1 with urinary Cd were shown in both men and women. These results indicate that the urinary KIM-1 might be more sensitive biomarker than urinary NAG and β2-MG for an early detection of renal tubular dysfunction. It is useful as a tool to detect renal effect of toxicity due to chronic Cd exposure at high level.
KIM-1; Biomarker; Cadmium; Chronic exposure; Renal tubular dysfunction
Premature infants are frequently exposed to aminoglycoside antibiotics. Novel urinary biomarkers may provide a non-invasive means for the early identification of aminoglycoside-related proximal tubule renal toxicity, to enable adjustment of treatment and identification of infants at risk of long-term renal impairment. In this proof-of-concept study, urine samples were collected from 41 premature neonates (≤32 weeks gestation) at least once per week, and daily during courses of gentamicin, and for 3 days afterwards. Significant increases were observed in the three urinary biomarkers measured (Kidney Injury Molecule-1 (KIM-1), Neutrophil Gelatinase-associated Lipocalin (NGAL), and N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG)) during treatment with multiple courses of gentamicin. When adjusted for potential confounders, the treatment effect of gentamicin remained significant only for KIM-1 (mean difference from not treated, 1.35 ng/mg urinary creatinine; 95% CI 0.05–2.65). Our study shows that (a) it is possible to collect serial urine samples from premature neonates, and that (b) proximal tubule specific urinary biomarkers can act as indicators of aminoglycoside-associated nephrotoxicity in this age group. Further studies to investigate the clinical utility of novel urinary biomarkers in comparison to serum creatinine need to be undertaken.
Editor’s Highlight: Sensitive and early noninvasive biomarkers of renal toxicity are needed to augment or replace current biomarkers. This report describes the development and validation of two bioassays for mouse urinary KIM-1 that may be of clinical value. Using a microbead-based assay and a quantitative dipstick assay, these assays demonstrated sensitivity and stability for detection of KIM-1 in models of renal toxicity when other biomarkers remained unchanged.
Kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1) has been qualified by the Food and Drug Administration and European Medicines Agency as a urinary biomarker to monitor preclinical nephrotoxicity in rats and on a case-by-case basis for the translation of potentially nephrotoxic drugs into first-in human studies. Although mouse models are widely employed in preclinical studies, few urinary biomarker studies have been performed in mice due to limited urine availability and lack of sensitive assays. Here, we report the development and validation of two different assays for quantitative assessment of mouse urinary KIM-1 (uKIM-1) and compare the sensitivity of KIM-1 relative to other standard markers in ischemia reperfusion and aristolochic acid (AA)–induced kidney injury in mice. A sensitive, reproducible, and quantitative microbead-based KIM-1 ELISA was established, which requires only 10 μl urine for triplicate determination with an assay range of 12.21 pg/ml to 50ng/ml. The second assay is a laminar flow dipstick assay, which has an assay range of 195 pg/ml to 50ng/ml and provides quantitative assessment of KIM-1 in 15min. uKIM-1 levels increased with increasing time of ischemia or time after AA administration. After only 10-min ischemia followed by 24-h reperfusion, uKIM-1 was significantly elevated by 13-fold, whereas serum creatinine (sCr), blood urea nitrogen, N-acetyl-β-glucosaminidase (NAG), and proteinuria levels did not change. After AA administration, uKIM-1 levels were significantly upregulated by greater than threefold within 12h, whereas sCr and NAG levels were unchanged. Mouse KIM-1 was stable for multiple freeze-thaw cycles, for up to 5 days at room temperature and up to at least an year when stored at −80°C.
kidney injury molecule-1; mouse KIM-1 assay; ischemia/reperfusion injury; aristolochic acid; nephrotoxicity biomarkers; acute kidney injury.
A decrease in glomerular podocyte number in membranous nephropathy and FSGS ultimately precipitates glomerulosclerosis and the decrease in kidney function. Recent studies have shown that in these diseases, glomerular parietal epithelial cells begin to express proteins considered unique to podocytes, and that these glomerular epithelial transition cells might serve as podocyte progenitors. Because retinoids improve many forms of experimental glomerular disease characterized by podocyte injury and loss, we asked if ATRA induces parietal epithelial cells to express podocyte proteins.
ATRA or vehicle was administered to rats with experimental membranous nephropathy (PHN model) and mice with experimental FSGS (anti-glomerular antibody model) following the onset of proteinuria. Immunohistochemistry staining of PAX2 (parietal epithelial cell marker), WT-1 (podocyte cell marker), and Ki-67 (proliferation marker) were performed on kidney tissues.
Compared to diseased animals receiving vehicle, ATRA statistically significantly increased the number of glomerular transition cells, defined as cells double staining for PAX2 and WT-1, in membranous nephropathy at weeks 2, 5 and 16, and in FSGS at weeks 1 and 2. This was accompanied by an increase in the number of podocytes compared to diseased controls receiving vehicle.
ATRA increases the number of glomerular epithelial transition cells in experimental proteinuric glomerular diseases. Thus, ATRA may provide a useful pharmacologic approach to decipher the mechanisms underlying the possible progenitor role of parietal epithelial cells.
all-trans retinoic acid; proteinuria; passive Heymann nephritis; membranous nephropathy; focal segmental glomerulosclerosis
Renal failure is one of the most serious complications associated with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD). To date, early markers have failed to predict renal function deterioration at the early stages. This 1-year prospective study evaluated N-acetyl-β-D-glucosaminidase (NAG) as a new surrogate marker for renal function in ADPKD.
A total of 270 patients were enrolled in the study, and we measured urinary NAG, β2-microglobulin, neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) and kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1) prospectively for 1 year to compare their predictive values for renal function.
Baseline urinary NAG/Cr was negatively correlated with estimated glomerular filtration rate (GFR) (r2 = 0.153, P < 0.001) and positively correlated with total kidney volume (TKV) (r2 = 0.113, P < 0.001). Among other biomarkers, urinary NAG/Cr better discriminated patients with decreased renal function from those with conserved renal function, showing the largest area under the curve (AUC 0.794). Immunohistochemical study revealed strong staining along the cyst-lining epithelial cells as well as the nearby compressed tubular epithelial cells. However, both single and repeated measurements of urinary NAG/Cr failed to predict renal function decline in 1 year.
Urinary NAG/Cr may be a useful surrogate marker for renal function in ADPKD patients.
Autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease; Biomarkers; Renal function
Chronic transplant dysfunction is characterized by renal function decline and proteinuria. Kidney injury molecule (KIM)-1, a transmembrane tubular protein with unknown function, is undetectable in normal kidneys, but markedly induced after injury. Urinary KIM-1 excretion has been quantified as biomarker of renal damage. We prospectively studied whether urinary KIM-1 predicts graft loss, independent of renal function and proteinuria.
Renal transplant recipients (n=145) visiting our outpatient clinic between August 2001 and July 2003 collected 24-hour urine samples for assessment of baseline urinary KIM-1 excretion (microsphere-based Luminex technology), and were followed for graft loss.
Recipients participated at a median (interquartile range) of 6.0 (2.5–12.0) years posttransplant in baseline measurements. Follow-up beyond baseline was 4.0 (3.2–4.5) years. Urinary KIM-1 excretion was 0.72 (0.42–1.37) ng per 24 hours. Occurrence of graft loss increased over tertiles of KIM-1 excretion: 3 (6.3%), 11 (22.4%), and 17 cases (35.4%; P=0.001), respectively. High KIM-1 excretion was associated with proteinuria, low creatinine clearance, and high donor age (all P<0.01). In multivariate Cox regression analyses, prediction of graft loss by KIM-1 appeared independent of creatinine clearance, proteinuria, and donorage. Hazard ratios (95% CI) for the second and third tertile of KIM-1 excretion were 3.6 (0.9–13.5) and 5.1 (1.5–17.8) in the final model.
Urinary excretion of KIM-1 is an independent predictor of long-term graft loss and therefore a promising new biomarker in early prediction of graft loss.
Chronic transplant dysfunction; Renal transplantation; Kidney injury molecule-1; Biomarker
Renovascular hypertension (RVH) is characterized by chronic inflammation of the stenotic kidney and progressive renal dysfunction. Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL), an acute phase protein induced in inflammatory conditions and ischemia, is a novel biomarker for acute kidney injury. We hypothesized that chronic RVH would be associated with increased renal and circulating NGAL levels.
We prospectively measured renal vein and inferior vena cava (IVC) levels of NGAL and inflammatory cytokines in essential hypertensive (EH) and RVH patients, during constant sodium intake and anti-hypertensive regimens, and compared them with systemic levels in age-matched normotensive subjects (n = 22 each). In addition, we measured urinary NGAL and kidney injury molecule (KIM)-1 in all patients.
Blood pressure, serum creatinine, estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR), lipid panels and medications were similar in RVH and EH. Systemic, stenotic and contralateral renal vein levels of NGAL were all similarly elevated in RVH versus normal hypertension and EH (P < 0.05), as were renal vein levels of inflammatory markers like tumor necrosis factor-α. Furthermore, renal vein NGAL levels inversely correlated with eGFR, and directly with renal vein (but not systemic) levels of inflammatory markers. Urinary levels of NGAL and KIM-1 were elevated in both EH and RVH, as were systemic levels of C-reactive protein.
Chronic RVH is associated with elevated NGAL levels, likely due to ongoing kidney and systemic inflammation and ischemia. These findings may also imply the occurrence of the inflammation process in chronic RVH, which might contribute to the poorer outcomes of RVH compared with EH patients.
cytokines; inflammation; KIM-1; NGAL; renovascular hypertension
Kidney toxicity accounts for a significant percentage of morbidity and drug candidate failure. Serum creatinine (SCr) and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) have been used to monitor kidney dysfunction for over a century but these markers are insensitive and non-specific. In multi-site preclinical rat toxicology studies the diagnostic performance of urinary kidney injury molecule-1 (Kim-1) was compared to traditional biomarkers as predictors of kidney tubular histopathologic changes, currently considered the “gold standard” of nephrotoxicity. In multiple models of kidney injury, urinary Kim-1 significantly outperformed SCr and BUN. The area under the receiver operating characteristic curve for Kim-1 was between 0.91 and 0.99 as compared to 0.79 to 0.9 for BUN and 0.73 to 0.85 for SCr. Thus urinary Kim-1 is the first injury biomarker of kidney toxicity qualified by the FDA and EMEA and is expected to significantly improve kidney safety monitoring.
Objectives. Retrospective study was designed to examine the importance of tissue kidney injury molecule-1 (KIM-1) expression in predicting kidney function in sixty patients (27 males) aged 34.15 ± 12.23 years with different kidney diseases over three years after kidney biopsy. Materials and Methods. Tissue KIM-1 expression was determined immunohistochemically and KIM-1 staining was scored semiquantitatively, as well as tubulointerstitialis (TIN), inflammation, atrophy, and fibrosis. Kidney function (MDRD formula) and proteinuria/day were evaluated at the time of biopsy (GFR0) and 6, 12, 24, and 36 months later. Results. Significantly positive correlations between tissue KIM-1 expression and age (r = 0.313), TIN inflammation (r = 0.456), fibrosis (r = 0.317), and proteinuria at 6 months (r = 0.394) as well as negative correlations with GFR0 (r = −0.572), GFR6 (r = −0.442), GFR24 (r = −0.398), and GFR36 (r = −0.412) were found. Meanwhile, TIN inflammation was the best predictor of all measured kidney functions during three years, while tissue KIM-1 expression (P = 0.016) was a predictor only at 6 months after biopsy. Conclusion. Tissue KIM-1 expression significantly predicts kidney function solely at 6 months after biopsy, when the effects of immune and nonimmune treatments are the strongest.
The application of molecular techniques to characterize clinical kidney biopsies has the potential to provide insights into glomerular diseases that cannot be revealed by traditional renal pathology. The present work is a proof-of-concept approach to test whether proteomic analysis of glomeruli isolated from clinical biopsies by laser capture microdissection can provide unique information regarding differentially-expressed proteins relevant to disease pathogenesis.
The proteomes of glomeruli isolated by laser capture microdissection from biopsies of normal kidneys (living-related donor kidneys) were compared to those from patients with diabetic nephropathy, lupus nephritis, and fibronectin glomerulopathy. Glomerular proteins were extracted, trypsin digested and subjected to liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry for identification and quantitation.
Relative to normal glomeruli, all disease-associated glomeruli showed an increased presence of complement components, a marked decline in podocyte-associated proteins, and a decrease in proteins associated with cellular metabolism. Additionally, fibronectin glomerulopathy glomeruli differed from all the other glomeruli because of a significant accumulation of fibronectin and fibulin.
This study demonstrates that our method acquires reproducible and quantitative proteomic information from laser capture microdissection isolates that can be used to characterize the molecular features of glomerular diseases.
Laser capture microdissection; proteomics; glomerular disease; kidney; mass spectrometry; lupus