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      Serum neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin at inception of renal replacement therapy predicts survival in critically ill patients with acute kidney injury

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          Abstract

          Introduction

          Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) is a promising novel biomarker that correlates with the severity and outcome of acute kidney injury (AKI). However, its prognostic utility during the late course of AKI, especially in patients that require renal replacement therapy (RRT) remains unknown. The aim of this study was to evaluate the predictive value of serum NGAL in patients with established AKI at inception of RRT in the intensive care unit (ICU).

          Methods

          Serum NGAL (ELISA methodology) was measured in 109 critically ill patients with AKI at inception of RRT in 7 ICUs of a tertiary care university hospital. The primary outcome studied was 28-day mortality. Secondary outcome measures were ICU length of stay, ventilator-free days, and renal recovery at day 28.

          Results

          There was a significant difference in serum NGAL between healthy subjects (median [interquartile range] 39.0 [37.5-42.75] ng/mL), critically ill patients with systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) (297 [184-490] ng/mL), and critically ill patients with sepsis (708 [365-1301] ng/mL; P < 0.0001), respectively. Multiple linear regression showed that NGAL levels were independently related to the severity of AKI and the extent of systemic inflammation. NGAL levels were higher in non-survivors (430 [303-942] ng/mL) compared to survivors (298 [159-506] ng/mL; P = 0.004). Consistently, Cox proportional hazards regression analysis identified NGAL as a strong independent predictor for 28-day survival (hazard ratio 1.6 (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.15 - 2.23), P = 0.005).

          Conclusions

          This is the first prospective evaluation of serum NGAL as an outcome-specific biomarker in critically ill patients at initiation of RRT. The results from this study indicate that serum NGAL is as an independent predictor of 28-day mortality in ICU patients with dialysis-dependent AKI.

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          Most cited references 26

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          Dual action of neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin.

          Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) is expressed and secreted by immune cells, hepatocytes, and renal tubular cells in various pathologic states. NGAL exerts bacteriostatic effects, which are explained by its ability to capture and deplete siderophores, small iron-binding molecules that are synthesized by certain bacteria as a means of iron acquisition. Consistently, NGAL deficiency in genetically modified mice leads to an increased growth of bacteria. However, growing evidence suggests effects of the protein beyond fighting microorganisms. NGAL acts as a growth and differentiation factor in multiple cell types, including developing and mature renal epithelia, and some of this activity is enhanced in the presence of siderophore:iron complexes. This has led to the hypothesis that eukaryotes might synthesize siderophore-like molecules that bind NGAL. Accordingly, NGAL-mediated iron shuttling between the extracellular and intracellular spaces may explain some of the biologic activities of the protein. Interest in NGAL has been sparked by the observation that NGAL is massively upregulated after renal tubular injury and may participate in limiting kidney damage. This review summarizes the current knowledge about the dual effects of NGAL as a siderophore:iron-binding protein and as a growth factor and examines the role of these effects in renal injury.
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            Endocytic delivery of lipocalin-siderophore-iron complex rescues the kidney from ischemia-reperfusion injury.

            Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (Ngal), also known as siderocalin, forms a complex with iron-binding siderophores (Ngal:siderophore:Fe). This complex converts renal progenitors into epithelial tubules. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that Ngal:siderophore:Fe protects adult kidney epithelial cells or accelerates their recovery from damage. Using a mouse model of severe renal failure, ischemia-reperfusion injury, we show that a single dose of Ngal (10 microg), introduced during the initial phase of the disease, dramatically protects the kidney and mitigates azotemia. Ngal activity depends on delivery of the protein and its siderophore to the proximal tubule. Iron must also be delivered, since blockade of the siderophore with gallium inhibits the rescue from ischemia. The Ngal:siderophore:Fe complex upregulates heme oxygenase-1, a protective enzyme, preserves proximal tubule N-cadherin, and inhibits cell death. Because mouse urine contains an Ngal-dependent siderophore-like activity, endogenous Ngal might also play a protective role. Indeed, Ngal is highly accumulated in the human kidney cortical tubules and in the blood and urine after nephrotoxic and ischemic injury. We reveal what we believe to be a novel pathway of iron traffic that is activated in human and mouse renal diseases, and it provides a unique method for their treatment.
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              Molecular characterization and pattern of tissue expression of the gene for neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin from humans.

              Neutrophil gelatinase-associated lipocalin (NGAL) is a 25-kDa lipocalin first identified as a protein stored in specific granules of the human neutrophil. The protein is believed to bind small lipophilic substances such as bacterial derived formylpeptides and lipopolysaccharides (LPS) and might function as a modulator of inflammation. To characterize the regulation of NGAL further, we have cloned and sequenced a 5869-bp region of the NGAL gene including 1695 bp of the 5' nontranscribed region and a 3696-bp coding region encompassing seven exons and six introns. The transcriptional start sites were identified by an RNase protection assay. The NGAL gene is highly homologous to the mouse gene 24p3. NGAL was expressed in bone marrow and in tissues that are prone to exposure to microorganisms. Potential cis-acting elements were identified in the promoter region of the NGAL gene by computer analysis and include binding sites for CTF/CBP, the hematopoietic transcription factors GATA-1 and PU.1, and the LPS-inducible factor NF-kappa B.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Crit Care
                Critical Care
                BioMed Central
                1364-8535
                1466-609X
                2010
                1 February 2010
                : 14
                : 1
                : R9
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Department of Nephrology & Hypertension, Hannover Medical School, Carl-Neuberg Strasse 1, D-30625, Hannover, Germany
                [2 ]Department of Medicine D, Division of General Internal Medicine, Nephrology, and Rheumatology, University Hospital Münster, Albert-Schweitzer-Strasse 33, 48149 Münster, Germany
                [3 ]Department of Clinical Chemistry, Hannover Medical School, Carl-Neuberg Strasse 1, D-30625, Hannover, Germany
                [4 ]Renal and Hypertensive Diseases, Saarland University Medical Centre, Kirrberger Straße, D-66421, Homburg/Saar, Germany
                Article
                cc8861
                10.1186/cc8861
                2875521
                20122150
                Copyright ©2010 Kümpers et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

                Categories
                Research

                Emergency medicine & Trauma

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