A new study has found a way to assess the quality of kidneys before transplantation that may one day help increase the number of usable donor kidneys. The study was published in the ‘Optics Express Journal’.
“Today, the lack of methods to accurately measure donor kidney damage and predict transplant outcome leads to high elimination rates and recipient complications in clinical practice,” said Mingxing Sui, head of the research team at Changhai Hospital in Shanghai, China. “We want to solve this problem by developing a new system that can non-invasively provide an objective measure of the quality of the donor’s kidney,” Sui added.
Sui and colleagues at the Shanghai University of Science and Technology in China reported the first use of enhanced Raman Surface Scattering (SERS) for the simultaneous and highly sensitive detection of two important biomarkers of kidney damage. They also described how they made SERS spectroscopy more convenient for clinical use. “This highly sensitive SERS-based multiplexing technique can quickly capture subtle changes in expression levels of biomarkers associated with donor kidney damage. This paves the way for an objective assessment of the quality of donor kidneys in practice. clinic, ”Sui said.
When a person donates a kidney after death, the process often involves taking a biopsy to assess the health of the kidney that will be donated. This step is not only invasive and time consuming, but can also lead to the disqualification of too many donor kidneys. Research has shown that biopsy results don’t always predict how well a kidney will function when transplanted. Recently, researchers identified the secretory leukocyte peptidase inhibitor (SLPI) and interleukin 18 (IL-18) as biomarkers found in a person’s blood and urine that can be used to objectively assess a person’s blood and urine. kidney injury. Although various analytical methods have been explored to detect these biomarkers, they have all failed due to limited sensitivity, lack of multiplexing, complicated sample preparation, or high cost.
Sui’s research team wanted to know if SERS could provide a better way to detect these biomarkers. This relatively new vibrational spectroscopy technique offered single-molecule sensitivity, was easy and quick to perform, and allowed the detection of multiple biomarkers using a single measurement. It works by using nanostructures to enhance Raman scattering that occurs when molecules are adsorbed onto a metal surface. This diffusion forms a unique type of spectral fingerprint for each molecule.
However, to move the SERS from the laboratory to the clinic, ways had to be found to further improve its sensitivity, reproducibility and simplicity. The researchers achieved this by developing a new hybrid SERS substrate that combined gold nanoparticles with a new 2D nanomaterial known as black phosphorus. The new nanosheets offer several advantages, including a high affinity for biomolecules, which increases sensitivity. They also eliminate the need for labels, making measurements easier.
“Although this work is still in its early stages, we believe that SERS could be used in clinical practice for the foreseeable future,” said Sui. “By collecting the donor’s urine or serum, the expression level of renal injury biomarkers could be measured non-invasively, rapidly and reproducibly, which is highly preferable in clinical practice over kidney biopsies.” , Sui added.
Researchers are now working to identify more biomarkers that could help more accurately assess the quality of donor kidneys. They are also developing machine learning algorithms to improve the interpretation of spectral fingerprints. (ANI)
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