Simple urine test detects common causes of kidney dysfunction after transplantation

March 6, 2014, American Society of Nephrology

A new noninvasive urine test can distinguish among different causes of acute kidney dysfunction after transplantation. The test, which is described in a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN), may allow patients to avoid invasive kidney biopsies when their transplanted organ is not functioning properly.

When creatinine levels are elevated in the blood of a recipient, it is an indication that the transplanted kidney is not functioning well. There are several reasons for transplant kidney dysfunction, and none of the blood or can reliably differentiate them. Because it is important to establish the exact reason for kidney dysfunction in order to determine the appropriate treatment, physicians typically perform a needle biopsy of the transplanted kidney.

Now, however, Thangamani Muthukumar, MD (Weill Medical College of Cornell University) and his colleagues have developed a urine test that measures the levels of several messenger RNAs (mRNAs) that are directly related to the disease processes that cause kidney dysfunction. The researchers measured absolute levels of mRNAs in 84 urine samples from 84 who had undergone needle biopsy of the transplanted kidney to determine the cause of their acute kidney dysfunction.

"Using statistical methods we have combined the mRNAs to yield a diagnostic signature," explained Dr. Muthukumar. The researchers developed two such signatures from cells found in the urine that could differentiate, in a two-step approach, the common causes of acute kidney dysfunction with high accuracy.

"Our study shows that when the creatinine level is elevated in the blood of a kidney transplant recipient, use of our urine test would differentiate the common causes of that led to the elevation in creatinine, hence benefiting many patients by allowing them to avoid the need for an invasive ," said Dr. Muthukumar.

Explore further: HIV can infect transplanted kidneys in HIV-positive recipients with undetectable virus

More information: The article, entitled "Urinary Cell mRNA Profiles and Differential Diagnosis of Acute Kidney Graft Dysfunction," will appear online at jasn.asnjournals.org/ on March 6, 2014.

Related Stories

HIV can infect transplanted kidneys in HIV-positive recipients with undetectable virus

December 5, 2013
HIV can infect transplanted kidneys in HIV-positive recipients even in the absence of detectable virus in the blood, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology ...

Biopsies before transplantation do not determine success of donated kidneys

February 20, 2014
Biopsies of donated kidneys provide little information for determining the suitability of organs for transplantation, according to two studies appearing in an upcoming issue of the Clinical Journal of the American Society ...

Protein-based urine test predicts kidney transplant outcomes

August 22, 2013
Levels of a protein in the urine of kidney transplant recipients can distinguish those at low risk of developing kidney injury from those at high risk, a study suggests. The results also suggest that low levels of this protein, ...

Urine test can diagnose, predict kidney transplant rejection

July 3, 2013
Analysis of three biomarkers in the urine of kidney transplant recipients can diagnose—and even predict—transplant rejection, according to results from a clinical trial sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and ...

Vitamin D supplements may improve kidney transplant recipients' health

November 8, 2013
Adequate vitamin D levels are important for maintaining kidney transplant recipients' health, according to a study that will be presented at ASN Kidney Week 2013 November 5-10 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, ...

Drug fails to help kidney transplant recipients

January 10, 2013
A drug that protects the kidneys of patients with chronic kidney disease does not seem to provide the same benefit to kidney transplant recipients, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the ...

Recommended for you

Study reveals how MRSA infection compromises lymphatic function

January 17, 2018
Infections of the skin or other soft tissues with the hard-to-treat MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) bacteria appear to permanently compromise the lymphatic system, which is crucial to immune system function. ...

Fresh approach to tuberculosis vaccine offers better protection

January 17, 2018
A unique platform that resulted in a promising HIV vaccine has also led to a new, highly effective vaccine against tuberculosis that is moving toward testing in humans.

New study validates clotting risk factors in chronic kidney disease

January 17, 2018
In late 2017, researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) discovered and published (Science Translational Medicine, (9) 417, Nov 2017) a potential treatment target to prevent chronic kidney disease (CKD) ...

Newly-discovered TB blood signal provides early warning for at-risk patients

January 17, 2018
Tuberculosis can be detected in people with HIV infection via a unique blood signal before symptoms appear, according to a new study by researchers from the Crick, Imperial College London and the University of Cape Town.

New study offers insights on genetic indicators of COPD risk

January 16, 2018
Researchers have discovered that genetic variations in the anatomy of the lungs could serve as indicators to help identify people who have low, but stable, lung function early in life, and those who are particularly at risk ...

Previous influenza virus exposures enhance susceptibility in another influenza pandemic

January 16, 2018
While past exposure to influenza A viruses often builds immunity to similar, and sometimes different, strains of the virus, Canadian researchers are calling for more attention to exceptions to that rule.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.